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Sudan, SPLM-N resume peace talks on 13 February: official

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February 2, 2014 (KHARTOUM) - Talks between Sudanese government and rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – North (SPLM-N) will resume talks on 13 February on the Two Areas, announced presidential assistant and chief negotiator Ibrahim Gandour on Sunday.

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Ibrahim Gandour (Photo SUNA)

Speaking to the press at the premises of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP), Gandour said the African Union High-level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) invited the two parties to resume talks on the basis of the UN resolution 2046 (2012) to end the three year conflict in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states.

The UN Security Council since May 2012 demands that the two worrying parties in Southern Sudan regions of Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile negotiate a peace agreement on the basis of the June 28, 2011 framework agreement on political partnership between them.

Initially, Sudanese president Omer al-Bashir rejected the framework agreement which is negotiated by his former assistant Nafei Ali Nafei. However since several months, Khartoum said willing to negotiate on the basis of this framework agreement which provides that, once their conflict in the Tow Areas is settled, the partners would work to establish a democratic government and end the ongoing conflict in Darfur.

During their last direct meeting in April 2013, the two parties failed to achieve any progress.

The SPLM-N said the priority should be given to the humanitarian assistance to the civilian affected by the conflict in the rebel areas. But the government insisted that a political deal is the only path to improve the situation on the ground.

In statements released on 26 January, SPLM-N top negotiator Yasir Arman said they demand to address first the humanitarian crisis in Blue Nile, South Kordofan and Darfur region. He further stressed that the conflict can only be ended through a comprehensive political solution for all the conflicts in Sudan with the participation of all political and rebel forces as well as civil society groups.

Khartoum refuses to hold a comprehensive peace talks with the armed movements altogether saying Darfur rebel groups have to negotiate on the basis of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur.

The Sudanese president recently called on the opposition parties to engage negotiations with the government on the new constitution and the resolution of the different conflicts in the country.

He also called the rebels to join this holistic process providing they sign peace agreements with the government.

(ST)

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