November 20, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) has leveled scathing criticism against the Islamic Movement (IM) conference, saying it further embroiled the Sudanese regime in the projects of international Islamism which threatens national security.
- FILE PHOTO - Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) north’s secretary general Yasir Arman speaks during a joint news conference with Malik Agar, head of the northern branch of SPLM, in Khartoum, July 3, 2011, ab
In a press release issued on Tuesday, SPLM-N’s secretary-general Yasir Arman said that the IM’s 8th General Conference which was held in Khartoum on 16 and 17 November has entrenched the association of the Sudanese regime with regional and international alliances of Islamism therefore rendering the country’s national security prone to violations.
The IM conference was held with the participation of 4,000 members and prominent foreign Islamists including Khalid Mishal, the leader of the Palestinian militant organization Hamas, and Rashid al-Ghannushi, the leader of Tunisia’s Ennahda Movement.
But the Godfather of Islamism in Sudan and leader of the Popular Congress Party (PCP), Hassan Al-Turabi, dismissed the conference as nothing but an attempt by their rival, the ruling National Congress Party (NCP), to monopolize Islamism and exclude his party.
Arman said that the conference “has placed Sudan in an international and regional confrontation starting with his close neighbors Saudi Arabia and [Arab] Gulf [countries]”
The conference sparked a regional controversy after the chief of police in Dubai, UAE, publicly criticized the speech delivered at the conference by the general guide of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Mohammed Badi.
The UAE official, Dahi Khalfan, tweeted that Badi’s speech from Sudan is a declaration of hostility against Gulf countries that he hopes will be "swept by the river of his revolution”.
The IM conference came a few weeks after an alleged Israel airstrike destroyed a Khartoum arms factory rumoured to be linked to Iran.
The SPLM-N official called for the necessity of disengaging the clash between the projects of international Islamist movements and the interests of Sudanese people. He added that the conference did not discuss any issue related to Sudanese people but rather focused on how to consolidate the regime.
Arman also called on the IM’s youth who really want change to distance themselves from the IM and join youth groups seeking change of the regime of president Omer Al-Bashir.
Meanwhile, the IM’s newly elected secretary-general, Al-Zubair Ahmad Al-Hassan, said in a press conference on Tuesday that the final recommendations of the IM’s conference called for greater government attention to improving the economy and agriculture while supporting social security services and basic commodities.
He added that the conference participants also called for improving foreign relations and ending wars in the country’s border regions of South Kordofan and Blue Nile while continuing the peace process in Darfur.