Home | News    Friday 17 January 2014

UK open to helping Sudanese government and opposition launch dialogue

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

January 16, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The United Kingdom Foreign Office Minister for Africa Mark Simmonds today expressed shock about Sudan’s handling of protesters who took the streets last September against the government’s decision to lift fuel subsidies.

JPEG - 20.5 kb
British Minister for Africa Mark Simmonds holds a press conference at the end of an official visit to Sudan in the capital Khartoum on January 16, 2014 (AFP Photo/Ebrahim Hamid)

The government says that 84 people were killed in these demonstrations but rights groups insist that figures stand at more than 200.

At a press conference in Khartoum, Simmonds said that Sudan has the political will that could enable it to meet challenges and crises facing it. He expressed his country’s readiness to help the government and opposition conduct a national dialogue to resolve the problems in Sudan.

"We have sensed in the course of discussions the existence of a will in and outside the government to get out of the crisis," he said.

The UK official called on the government to expand freedoms, noting that conflicts serve only to exacerbate the situation.

Simmonds said that his meetings with government officials since Tuesday dealt with issues including the conflict in Darfur, Blue Nile, South Kordofan, human rights as well as the effects on the economy by the reduced flow of oil from South Sudan as a result of the ongoing crisis.

He disclosed that UK is in contact with all parties in South Sudan for the sake of ending the violence there stressing his country’s position that a solution cannot be imposed through military force. He hailed Sudan’s position on the crisis as balanced adding that Khartoum is playing an important role elsewhere in the Central African Republic (CAR) and Somalia which will positively impact the country’s international standing.

The UK official said that they will work to have the South Sudan rivals sit down adding that they support the ongoing efforts of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) that is sponsoring negotiations between Juba and rebels.

Earlier today the Sudanese finance Minister Badr al-Deen Mahmood complained during a meeting with Simmonds that the hefty external debt hurts the country and limits its access to concessional borrowing.

Mahmood underscored the importance of the international community helping Sudan obtain debt relief that would allow it to obtain loans to support the country’s development.

He stressed that Sudan fulfilled the conditions stipulated by the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative but has yet to receive any form of debt relief.

Simmonds said that resolving Sudan’s debts is contingent upon Khartoum approving poverty reduction strategy which means the ball is in its court.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in a report released last November that Sudan’s debt will hit $44.7 billion this year which amounts to 85% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

(ST)

Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article


 
 

The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.


Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis


Peace is only ultimate choice to end violence in South Sudan 2014-07-31 08:18:49 By Peter Gai Manyuon June 30, 2014 - In South Sudan, when once talk about peace and harmony, some people who are enemy of peace and reconciliation will begin analyzing in different ways. Before (...)

How pursuit of good life dominates ethical conscience in Africa 2014-07-27 05:03:47 By Francis Ayul Yuar July 26, 2014 - Looking at the African Continent, my country in particular within this critical time of post independence political and ethnic’s violence, one’s mind wondered (...)

2015 elections are not a priority for Sudanese 2014-07-23 04:35:55 By Mahmoud A. Suleiman July 22, 2014 - This article comes against the backdrop of the news that reported the announcement of the National Elections Commission (NEC) that it had prepared the (...)


MORE








Latest Press Releases


Memory, healing and transformation in South Sudan 2014-07-23 05:55:08 Memory, Healing and Transformation in South Sudan A Working Paper by David K. Deng July 2014 Contents Introduction 1 What is memorialization? 2 Timing 2 Risks 3 Principles 3 Integrity 3 (...)

South Sudan: Independence Day marred by ongoing war crimes and looming famine 2014-07-09 01:39:56 AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE 8 July 2014 South Sudan: Independence Day marred by ongoing war crimes and looming famine · Both sides to the conflict committing war crimes and crimes (...)

UN urged to probe alleged cover-ups and manipulations by its mission in Darfur 2014-06-26 05:40:52 Strengthen Peacekeeping Mission’s Rights Reporting, Civilian Protection (New York, June 25, 2014) – The United Nations secretary-general should investigate alleged cover-ups and manipulation of (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2014 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.