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Khartoum accuses Washington of encouraging rebels to sabotage Darfur peace process

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March 12, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese government has demanded that the US back down from its recent stance against the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) and respect resolutions made by the UN Security Council (UNSC) and the African Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC).

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The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, (C) pictured with a delegation of Sudanese rebels in Addis Ababa on 7 March 2014 (Photo courtesy of rebel delegation)

The US ambassador at the UN Samantha Power, who addressed the AUPSC meeting on Monday, reportedly called on council members to find an alternative forum to resolve the Darfur crisis, saying the DDPD has become outdated and cannot be relied on.

The Sudanese government’s Darfur peace implementation follow-up office underscored in a statement on Wednesday that Khartoum is absolutely committed to the DDPD as a sole platform for any efforts extended to completion of peace in Darfur, asserting its rejection of any attempt to establish platform parallel or alternative to the Doha forum.

The statement warned that the US actions encourage the non-signatory groups to impose their own agendas on Darfur people and Sudanese people in general, saying Washington recent stance is not new.

It stressed that Washington announced its support for the DDPD only after it became isolated following the large support which was offered by African nations, Arab world, Islamic world, and the United Nations, saying that support yielded approval of the DDPD by the UNSC and a call for non-signatories to immediately and unconditionally join it.

The statement further said the call for new forum would neither be accepted by Darfur people who represent the real stakeholders nor the Sudanese government, emphasizing rgar it only intends to weaken confidence on the DDPD and obstruct peace efforts besides paving the road for those who seek regime change.

The DDPD was finalized at the All Darfur Stakeholders Conference in May 2011 in Doha. In mid-July the Sudanese government and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) led by Tijani El-Sissi signed a protocol agreement committing them to the document.

The Sudan Liberation Movement of Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) and Abdel-Wahid Nur (SLM-AW) and Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) refused to sign the accord and remain at war with Khartoum

The US remarks came at a time when the Darfur region is witnessing an escalating tribal violence and armed clashes between the Sudanese army and armed rebel groups.

Last Thursday, the head of Darfur Regional Authority (DRA), Tijani El-Sissi warned against the rapidly deteriorating security situation in North and South Darfur states and criticized government for failing to restore security in the region, which has witnessed rebellion since 2003.

Sissi further said that the insecurity in North and South Darfur hampers the implementation of development projects. "What happens there will not be a catalyst to start in any reconstruction effort in those areas," he added.

He urged the federal government to take the necessary measures to contain the attacks carried by the rebel groups emphasizing that the continuation of the current situation without decisive riposte or (political) solution will negatively impact the DDPD, peace in Darfur and the country in general.

(ST)

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