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JEM denies reaching agreement with Sudanese government over Darfur conflict

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January 6, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - The Justice and Equality Movement Friday denied statements by Sudanese presidential aide that an agreement has been reached with two Darfur rebel movements on major issues at informal meetings held recently.

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Chief negotiator of JEM & SLM-MM delegation Ahmed Tugud and his delegation member Sayed Sharif (C) seen after a meeting with the mediation, while the government chief negotiators listens to unidentified interlocutors on Sunday November 22, 2015 (ST Photo)

JEM, Sudan Liberation Movement-Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) and the Sudanese government last held several informal consultations meetings in Addis Ababa and Doha brokered by Uganda and U.S. special envoy for two Sudans, and Qatar.

Following his meeting with the UN Secretary-General Special Envoy, Nicholas Haysom on Wednesday, Sudanese Presidential Assistant Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid said the “government, in informal meetings held earlier, has reached an agreement with Darfur rebels on the major issues and we hope to settle the issue completely in the coming rounds of talks”.

JEM Chief Negotiator Ahmed Tugod Lissan denied that they had reached any compromise with the government since the end of the peace talks brokered by the African Union High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP).

"The Movement did not meet at all - either alone or jointly with the SLM-MM - with a National Congress Party (NCP) delegation to discuss any outstanding issues related to the cessation of hostilities or to the negotiations between the parties since the last round under the auspices of the AUHIP in Addis Ababa," Tugud said.

"We are not surprised that a leading NCP member lies because lying is part of their political methods," to cover up the massacres committed by their militiamen or the failure of the dialogue process, he added

In their last meeting from 9 to 14 August 2016, the government, JEM and SLM-MM discussed the signing of a cessation of hostilities agreement and a humanitarian access agreement. The two deals are part of confidence building measures conceived by the mediation to pave the way for an inclusive national dialogue conference inside Sudan.

However the parties diverged on the location sites of rebel fighters and mechanisms for the monitoring of humanitarian assistance. Also, the two groups raised the release their prisoners from the Sudanese jails and the need to open the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) for discussions.

At the time, the AUHIP criticized the position of the two armed groups saying they “re-opened numerous issues that had previously been agreed and others which contradicted the Roadmap Agreement”. Also the mediation disclosed they refused the options the mediation proposed on the location sites of fighter.

In a bid to break the deadlock, U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan, Donald Booth, and before him President Yoweri Museveni organized informal and separate consultations meetings with the parties to narrow the gaps between them.

Also, Qatari Deputy Prime Minister tasked with the implementation of the DDPD Ahmad bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud and the head of UNAMID and Joint Chief Mediator Martin Uhomoibhi met with the two parties and made some proposals.

(ST)

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