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Sudanese opposition downplays Bashir’s call for dialogue as ‘lip service’

January 2, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese opposition coalition known as National Consensus Forces (NCF) brushed aside this week’s call for dialogue by president Omer Hassan al-Bashir and described it as lip service.

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Kamal Omer Abdel Salam of the Popular Congress Party (Reuters)

The NCF spokesperson Kamal Omer said that Bashir’s speech at the commemoration of Sudan’s 58th independence is simply a repetition of past remarks that contained nothing new.

Omer stressed that the National Congress Party (NCP)-led government is not serious about democratic transformation.

He reiterated the opposition’s call for forming a transitional government to work on drafting a permanent constitution that would prevent ripping the country apart.

"They [NCP] want us to be part of them and to market us in a new way using same old techniques," the opposition figure said.

Omer also commented on last month’s government shakeup saying it is not to promote change but to enforce tyranny.

Sudan’s opposition parties call for establishing a transitional government and holding a national conference with the participation of rebel groups to discuss a peaceful solution for the conflicts in Darfur region, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile states.

The interim government would organize general elections once a political agreement on constitutional matters is reached, inaugurating a new democratic regime. But the NCP rejects this proposal saying opposition parties must simply prepare for the 2015 elections and that rebels should sign first peace accords.

(ST)