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U.S., UK welcome Sudan’s decision to extend unilateral truce

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North Darfur governor Abdel wahid Youssef (C) unidentified army general (L) and RSF commander Hametti inspect troops in Ain Siro on 1 June 2017 (ST photo)

January 6, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The U.S. Embassy in Khartoum and the UK Special Representative for Sudan and South Sudan have welcomed Sudan’s decision to extend the ceasefire in war areas.

The Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir, on Thursday, issued a decree extending the unilateral cease-fire declared in the operations areas until the end of March.

“The U.S. Embassy in Khartoum welcomes the recent positive decision by Sudan to extend the Cessation of Hostilities. Steps such as these by both the government and the armed opposition will be necessary to move towards a negotiated peace” read an embassy tweet on Friday

For his part, the UK Special Representative for Sudan and South Sudan Chris Trott welcomed Sudan’s decision to extend the unilateral cessation of hostilities.

He called to take advantage of the ceasefire to achieve real progress in reaching a long-term solution for the conflicts in Sudan.

The Sudanese army has been fighting the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/North (SPLM-N) rebels in Blue Nile and South Kordofan, also known as “Two Areas” since 2011 and a group of armed movements in Darfur since 2003.

The purpose of the unilateral truce was initially to create a conducive environment for talks brokered by the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) to end the armed conflicts.

However, the AUHIP-led process which seeks to achieve a "holistic" peace in Sudan has been stopped since August 2016 after the failure of the government and the armed groups to achieve progress in the two-track negotiations.

The Sudan Troika including Norway, U.S., and UK have been supporting the AUHIP mediation and continue to make efforts to bring the parties to resume talks.

(ST)

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