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Sudan’s Nafie meets Ethiopian PM over Abyei issues

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By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

November 17, 2012 (ADDIS ABABA) - Presidential assistant to Sudan’s Omer Hassan Al-Bashir, Nafie Ali Nafie held talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn over Abyei issue on Saturday.

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FILE - Sudan’s presidential assistant Nafie Ali Nafie

President Bashir and his South Sudanese counterpart Salva Kiir signed a Cooperation Agreement last September. However, the two sides were unable to settle their differences over a referendum to be held in Abyei or to make progress on the territorial disputes along the new 1,800km international border.

According to Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Desalegn and Nafie discussed the future of Abyei, the main region of contention, where Ethiopian peacekeepers have been deployed for over a year in a UN force with a chapter seven mandate from the UN Security Council.

Tensions have risen in the area since Bashir announced his rejection of a decision by the African Union Peace and Security Council to back a proposal by the mediation for a referendum to be held in October 2013 without the Misseriya, should they fail to strike a deal within six weeks.

Before arriving in Ethiopia, the presidential assistant toured different African countries to explain the position of his government over the issue.

Sudan which accuses the mediation of backing the South Sudanese position says favourable to the partition of the disputed region between the two countries.

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Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Hailemariam Desalegn attends the Joint Political Committee meeting between Sudan and Ethiopia in Khartoum December 24, 2011 (Reuters)

Desalegn and Nafie further discussed the conflict in Blue Nile State, which has forced 38,000 people to flee into Ethiopia. The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) says that 68,901 people have also been displaced in Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian premier reaffirmed his country’s intention to continue to help mediate discussions with the Presidents of Sudan and South Sudan to resolve the differences between the two countries and find a durable solution.

Ethiopia, which shares border with the two countries, is seen as honest broker by both Sudan and South Sudan and the east African nation, and is the seat of the African Union, which has hosted a number of rounds of talks between the two Sudans.

(ST)

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  • 18 November 2012 08:25, by South South

    Nafie acts like someone who lives on the moon, AU decision about Abyei is one to be followed. All what Sudan needs to do now is to make it or break it. Northern Sudanese could you please help us to take this message to your penguin uncles in Khartoum. They seem to not understanding anything. Arabs like to see what our friends in Israel are doing these days to the penguins in GAZA.

    repondre message

  • 18 November 2012 12:46, by Kikiji longiro

    Hey the childern of Abyei,
    Abyei was South Sudan until 1905,people be reminded that Iran is building nuclear weapons and is not yet finished.Please as long as all eyes are watching over these two countries relatioship,Abyei is made a victim because of it,s Euranium.The two cases of Abyei & Heglig plus miles 14 are yet searching for more graves between the two countries.

    repondre message

  • 18 November 2012 13:10, by Kikiji longiro

    Ali Nafei is not running all over these African countries because he love Dinkas & Nuers in those areas to remain a part of Sudan BY HISTORY but he love what those soil have.
    Anyway, I beg our occupied president of nothing Mr. Salva Kiir & Allies to forget about Heglig,s with it,s 125,000 barrels of oil and stick only to recover mile 14 & Abyei.IF POSSIBLE FROM HIS ARABS COLLEAGUES.
    Kikiji

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  • 18 November 2012 15:06, by Ahajlai

    the issue of Abyie does not need going around beating the bush the only solution is accepting referendum,nothing is above the reality am convene Abyie will at last come to South.

    repondre message

  • 18 November 2012 16:35, by Wolleyewu

    Honest broker of the two sudanes, Ethiopia;a phrase which makes me laugh out loud.For Sudanes of course she is because under the aparthide Tigray dominated rule Ethiopia has been humilated beyond imagination of every citizen & our fertile lands along the borders has been given away without the knowledge of brave Ethiopians.However TPLF regime will be gone very soon and sudanes will take the price.

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