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Three armed groups extend unilateral cessation of hostility in Darfur

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Gibril Ibrahim and Minni Minnawi at the opening session of Darfur track 23 Nov 2014 (ST Photo)

November 30, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Three armed groups extended for two months a unilateral cessation of hostilities in Darfur region and reiterated their commitment to the African Union-brokered Roadmap Agreement for peace in Sudan.

In a joint declaration including for the first time the Sudan Liberation Movement - Transitional Council (SLM-TC), the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and the SLM-Minni Minnawi extended the humanitarian truce from 30 November 2017 to 31 January 2018.

"The objectives of the extended Cessation of Hostilities are to protect civilians, provide unhindered humanitarian access to war-affected populations, and create a conducive environment for peace," read the declaration extended to Sudan Tribune on Thursday evening.

The three groups said the two-month period aims to re-establish synchronized timing of Cessation of Hostilities declarations across the Areas of the Blue Nile, South Kordofan, and Darfur.

"The JEM, SLM–MM, and SLM–TC commit that they will not initiate an attack or wage an offensive, and all armed groups under their control shall comply with the Cessation of Hostilities"

However, they said they would only riposte in case of self-defence, acts for the protection of civilians, or acts against uncoordinated moving targets within or around the conflict areas.

The SLM-TC which is not part of the AUHIP mediated process carried a coordinated attack with the SLM-MM in May 2017 on the Sudanese army in North Darfur and South Darfur states.

Khartoum at the time accused Libyan General Khalifa Haftar and South Sudanese government of backing the two attacks.

(ST)

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