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Sudanese president extends ceasefire until end of 2017

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Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir (AFP Photo/ASHRAF SHAZLY)
October 8, 2017 (KHARTOUM) — The Sudanese president Sunday extended a unilateral cessation of hostilities for three months in the troubled Blue Nile and South Kordofan states.

"Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir issued a Republican Decree on Sunday evening extending the cease-fire in the country until December 31, 2017," reported the official new agency SUNA.

The decision to extend the ceasefire comes two days after the lift of economic sanctions on Sudan by the U.S. administration which facilitates peace talks with the rebel groups in southern and western parts of the country.

The extension of the truce aims to "create a conducive environment for negotiations on the two regions, and within the framework of the government’s keenness to achieve peace and stability in the country".

Talks between the government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) have been stopped since August 2016.

The efforts of the African Union mediators have been complicated by a rift within the group that led to the creation of two factions last April.

The SPLM-al-Hilu said it would resume peace talks after an extraordinary general conference to adopt statutes and elect a new leadership in October. While the SPLM-N Agar says only disposed t to negotiate a humanitarian agreement.

Last August, al-Hilu has declared a six-month unilateral cessation of hostilities starting from 31 July 2017 up to 31 Jan 2018.

(ST)

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