March 26, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The leaders of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement - North (SPLM-N) arrived Saturday in South Kordofan for talks with the political and military leadership members in a bid to contain and resolve a crisis that hit the rebel group following the resignation of the movement’s vice president Abdul Aziz al-Hilu.
Al-Hilu resigned recently from his position as deputy chairman to protest the indifference of his demand to include the right of self-determination in the SPLM-N position paper to the peace talks mediated by the African Union.
Following the head of the Nuba Mountains liberation council, Adam Koko Kodi, backed al-Hilu’s demand of self-determination and dissolved the SPLM-N general secretariat and the negotiating team. The local political organ has no competences on such matters but its decisions are seen as a support to the deputy chairman and open the door for a split in the group.
According to a statement extended to Sudan Tribune by the spokesperson of the negotiating team Mubarak Ardol on Sunday, the movement’s chairman Malik Agar, secretary general Yasir Arman and other leadership council members arrived Saturday to the SPLM-N-held areas in the Nuba Mountains.
Upon their arrival the leadership, which was received by the national anthem played by the SPLA-N Orchestra, engaged in lengthy meetings with the Chief of Staff Jacod Mekouar, his deputies and senior officers, Governors of the Nuba Mountains, Blue Nile Suleiman Jabbona and Sediq al-Mansi respectively.
The visit "confirmed that the SPLM remains strong, solid, united and able to challenge the regime of the National Congress Party, adheres to the issues of change and the removal of genocide and war crimes regime," said the statement.
Ardol pointed out that the delegation will continue its meetings with the other SPLM-N bodies in the rebel held areas. However he didn’t indicate when it would meet the South Kordofan Liberation Council which announced its support to the deputy chairman Abel Aziz al-Hilu and backed his demand for self determination.