Home | News    Thursday 29 May 2014

Al-Mahdi’s arrest stirs divisions among Sudanese opposition over national dialogue

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

May 28, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The nearly two-week arrest of the National Umma Party leader, Sadiq al-Mahdi, stirred conflicting reactions among Sudanese opposition parties that have accepted to be part of the national dialogue process.

JPEG - 99.1 kb
From left to right: Leader of the Popular Congress Party (PCP) Hassan Al-Turabi, Reform Now Party (RNP) head Ghazi Salah Al-Deen Al-Attabani, National Umma Party (NUP) Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi and second vice-president Hassabo Abdel-Rahman attend a speech by the president announcing a national dialogue initiative on 27 January 2014 (SUNA)

The Reform Now Party (RNP), of Ghazi Salah Eddin al-Attabani criticized al-Mahdi’s arrest and recent measures restricting the freedom of the press, saying it would derail the national dialogue. But, the Popular Congress Party (PCP) of Hassan al-Turabi reiterated that it would not abandon the political process.

“The government’s approach to the current political crisis is at least surprising and can be described as short-sighted and narrow-minded,” said the RNP, in a statement released following a meeting of its political bureau on Monday.

The RNP, which split from the ruling party last year over need for reforms, said that the government lacks a clear vision towards dialogue and national reconciliation stressing that “those obstacles could lead to the suspension of dialogue”.

However, PCP external relations official, Bashir Adam Rahama said on Wednesday that his party is fully committed to the national dialogue and would boycott it even if all the opposition parties quit the process.

He further said that the agenda of the forthcoming dialogue will focus on peace, promotion of freedoms and economic reforms, as well as resolution of regional crises and the transitional period arrangements, reaffirming that “there is no way out of these crises, but to sit at the table of dialogue”.

The Islamist opposition official did not rule out that foreign pressures on rebels groups lead the latter to participate in the national dialogue once they got strong guarantees from the government after a ceasefire and humanitarian access to civilians in the rebel held areas.

It is believed in Khartoum, that European countries particularly those seen as “neutral” by the Sudanese government like Germany, Italy and even Britain can play a positive role in the national dialogue by bridging the gaps between the Sudanese parties and proposing a roadmap for peace in Sudan.

EU REITERATES SUPPORT

The European Union (EU) Delegation in Khartoum in agreement with the European embassies in Sudan and the Ambassador of Norway issued a joint statement on Wednesday reiterating its support to the comprehensive national dialogue and calling on all the Sudanese parties to “abstain from acts and statements that might derail the process”.

“We express great concern about recent actions, specifically measures imposing renewed limits on freedom of the press, and the freedoms of expression, association, participation, assembly and religion. The arrest and continued detention of opposition leader Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi in particular risks having an adverse effect on the process of national dialogue,” the European diplomats further said.

They further concluded by urging Khartoum government to work for peace, national dialogue and full respect of human rights and political freedoms.

REFORM BUT NO CHAOS

The deputy chairman of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) and presidential assistant, Ibrahim Ghandour, on Wednesday renewed calls for national dialogue saying that his government wants it to be conducted without endangering the political stability.

Speaking in a symposium organised by NCP women section, Ghandour said his government is committed and keen to dialogue with political opposition, pointing that if they did not spare effort to negotiate with the rebels they should rather negotiate with opponents who did not take up arms.

He further stressed that the government does not act by reacting to the events but calls to the need to combine personal freedom and the law.

The presidential assistant was commenting on the internal and foreign statements criticizing the arrest of the opposition leader who supports the national dialogue process and democratic transition in Sudan, but also the recent series of decisions reneging on the freedom of expression.

Sudanese officials said they reject any criticism against the armed forces and government militia Rapid Support Forces which al-Mahdi accused of committing atrocities in South Kordofan and Darfur.

(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


Appointment of Dr. Riek as FVP is welcome but...? 2016-02-13 13:18:16 By James Okuk “Geography has made us neighbors. History has made us friends. Economics has made us partners, and necessity has made us allies.” – President J.F. Kennedy. On Thursday February 11, (...)

Formation of “TGoNU” without Constitutional Amendment: Is it a right of necessity? 2016-02-09 20:30:29 By Mabor Maker Dhelbeny In its 55th Extra-ordinary Meeting, held on 30th – 31st January, 2016 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the IGAD Council of Ministers in the communiqué on South Sudan: (1) (...)

Terrorism Tops African Summit Agenda: Lip service or strategic move? 2016-02-07 04:56:59 By Trayo A. Ali In Africa, terrorism is not only strategic threat to continent political security and destabilization, but more importantly it also constitutes fundamental challenge and eminent (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


Civil society group decries delay of S. Sudan transitional gov’t 2016-01-29 18:08:53 South Sudan Civil Society Alliance Date: 29.1.2016 For the immediate Release Press Release Following the passing of deadline of the formation of Transitional Government of National Unity in the (...)

Africa: Strengthen steps to end child marriage 2015-12-14 08:04:41 December 10, 2015 African governments should coordinate action to improve laws, education, health care, and public awareness to end the scourge of child marriage, Human Rights Watch said today (...)

Professor Akolda, it is too early for you to go 2015-12-06 06:36:15 I learnt from social media of the untimely departure of Professor Akolda Maan Tier on the 30th Nov 2015, whom I knew and admired, as one of the great, committed sons of both Sudans, who dedicated (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2016 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.