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


Why reports on alleged atrocities are flawed 2015-07-28 08:59:54 By Joseph de Tuombuk* The recently-released Human Rights Watch and UNMISS reports on alleged atrocities committed by SPLA forces, are seriously flawed and could not withstand any challenge in (...)

UNSC Sanctioned Janjaweed Leader Musa Hilal Flaunts Travel Ban 2015-07-25 06:05:13 By Enough Team" On July 20, the Sudan Tribune reported that Musa Hilal, the leader of the notorious Janjaweed militias during the Darfur crisis, flaunted his United Nations Security Council (...)

Will the report of AU Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan be released? 2015-07-20 06:52:08 By Luka Biong Deng When the AU Peace and Security Council resolved in its meeting on 30th December 2013 to establish a Commission to investigate atrocities committed since the eruption of (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


Sudanese, human rights groups and advocates demand renewal of UNAMID 2015-06-25 06:03:32 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: New York: Ahmed H.Adam, Tel. +1 347 567 1491 or aha64@cornell.edu Kampala: Abdelrahman Gasim, Tel. +256 7 51 90 77 77 or gasim202000@gmail.com Geneva: Abdelbagi (...)

Civil society groups urge to stop hostilities in W. Bahr El Ghazal 2015-06-11 22:24:37 Urgent action for sustainable peace in Western Bahr El Ghazal State Civil Society Statement: June 10, 2015 Wau –Western Bahr El Ghazal State- The Republic of South Sudan We, civil society (...)

Two South Sudanese pastors face death penalty in Khartoum 2015-06-03 06:08:37 African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies Two South Sudanese Pastors face death penalty for voicing opposition to corruption scandal at Khartoum Bahri Church (2 June 2015) Two South Sudanese (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2015 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.