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Sudanese opposition forces decline consultations meeting with African mediators

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Sudan Call leadership holds a press conference at the end of five day meeting in Paris on 20 January 2017 (ST Photo)
January 25, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The opposition Sudan Call forces in Khartoum, which is supportive for the African Union efforts for peace and reforms in Sudan, has declined an invitation by the chief mediator for a consultation meeting in Addis Ababa on 4-5 February

They further criticised the silence of the mediation over the arrest of the opposition leaders and even its decision to hold a meeting for the Two Areas only with the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) led by Abdel Aziz al-Hilu.

The African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) led by President Thabo Mbeki has called the Sudanese government and the SPLM-N led by Abdel Aziz al-Hilu for a new round of talks but excluded the other SPLM-N faction of Malik Agar saying this time talks are on a ceasefire agreement in the Two Areas pointing that the latter has no forces on the ground.

Initially, the AUHIP brokered process has two tracks one for the Blue Nile and South Kordofan states and the other for Darfur region. Once the two processes reach peace agreements ending the war, the comprehensive process will include the political parties to discuss the political and constitutional future of the country.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the Sudan Call forces inside the country including the opposition National Umma party (NUP) and the Sudanese Congress Party (SCoP) said they are not concerned by a process that resumes 18 months after the failure of talks in August 2016.

"We are not concerned by the call for the resumption of negotiations and we call on the African Union and the international community to clearly condemn the regime and not to provide it with a lifeline and participate in the violation of the rights and freedoms the regime practices," said a statement issued by the group on Thursday.

The opposition groups deplored that the AUHIP didn’t condemn the regime’s crackdown on the leaders of the Sudan Call forces who are arrested after the protest against the increase of bred price.

The statement went further to say that the call for the meeting serves the interests of the Sudanese regime because it did not "address the comprehensiveness of the (Sudanese) crisis", and did not propose a serious path to achieve a just peace and a democratic transition.

The Sudanese security service arrested the leaders Sudanese Communist Party and the Sudanese Congress Party, the deputy chairman and the secretary general of the National Umma Party.

The SPLM-N led by Malik Agar Wednesday criticised the AUHIP mediators for calling the government and al-Hilu faction saying it ignores the comprehensive approach which was the main purpose of the process as it was provided in a number of resolutions by the UN Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Commission.

(ST)

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