January 26, 2014 (KHARTOUM) - The rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) welcomed the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement, saying it represents a important step to settle the conflict in the neighbouring South Sudan.
"We are deeply satisfied with the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement , which we consider as an important step to end the current crisis," said SPLM-N secretary- general Yasir Arman in remarks about the political situation in the two Sudans released on Sunday.
Arman further expressed hope that the ongoing conflict would help to build a strong state in South Sudan for the benefit of its people and the region. He further said they wish that South Sudanese would reach a national democratic project to achieve justice and preserve their dignity after the long years of suffering and deprivation.
Arman also said that the SPLM-N chairman, Malik Agar, his deputy Abdel Aziz Hilu and him were following the situation on daily basis, disclosing they were in touch with their former comrades urging them to stop the fighting and peacefully settle their political disagreements.
SPLM-N relief wing, the Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Agency (SRRA), on 17 January said that the Sudanese refugees from Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile states in South Sudan are facing tough humanitarian situation, as aid groups stopped food distribution and evacuated their staff after the start of hostilities.
Clashes that erupted in Juba between SPLA troops loyal to president Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar on 15 December quickly spread into other parts of the young nation and took on a brutal and tribal character.
Thousands of civilians were killed and more than half a million have been displaced.
The truce brokered by an IGAD mediation team was signed on 23 January. The negotiating teams are expected to hold direct talks on 7 February to discuss ways to end the conflict.