March 25, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The Nuba Mountains Liberation Council (NMLC), a regional body for the SPLM-North in South Kordofan, has announced its support to Abdel Aziz al-Hliu and endorsed his demand for the right to self-determination for their region.
- A SPLA-N rebel soldier, in South Kordofan (AFP)
The local body demanded further went to dissolve the general secretariat of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) and withdraw confidence from Yasir Arman.
The decisions, which are announced in a statement signed by the head of the SPLM-N organ Adam Koko Kodi, come following a resignation letter extended by the deputy chairman Abel Aziz al-Hilu to the NMLC earlier this month.
SPLM-N chairman Malik Agar acknowledged the existence of the resignation letter but underscored that the NMLC is not the competent body to discuss and make a decision on such a matter.
The statement said the NMLC as the higher political organ in the rebel-held area in South Kordofan state rejected al-Hilu’s resignation in a meeting held from 6 to 25 March and tasked him with the "file of negotiations and fundamental issues for the Nuba Mountains People".
In addition, the meeting endorsed the right of self-determination for the people of the Nuba Mountains, pointing that "all peoples have the right to self-determination guaranteed by international laws and charters".
In its grounds to justify the adoption of this principle the statement mentioned: the "Historical grievances against the people of the region by the successive central governments"; "Racism based on race and religion", "The regime’s determination to apply Islamic law", "Continuing policies of genocide and ethnic cleansing", ."Non-implementation of agreements signed with the Central governments particularly National Congress regime" and "The desire of the people of the region, which was expressed at the All Nuba Conference in Kauda in 2002".
Al-Hilu in his resignation letter said that Arman had ignored his demand to include the right of self-determination in the agenda of the peace talks with the Sudanese government brokered by the African Union.
The statement didn’t refer to the SPLM-N Chairman Malik Agar or mention his name. It was also keen to avoid talking about the Blue Nile State or any other Sudanese region but only focused on the Nuba Mountains area in South Kordofan State
The military leadership of the rebel group in the Nuba Mountains didn’t yet issue any statement on this split.
However, observers say their position in favour or against al-Hilu and his supporters regretfully leads the group into an internal conflict and probably confrontations between the two factions in the future.
The Sudanese government and SPLM-N leadership are observing a unilateral cessation of hostilities declaration since last year.