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Sudan renews keenness to resume Darfur peace talks

July 25, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese government has reiterated readiness to resume Darfur peace talks as soon as it receives an invitation from the African mediation.

Amin Hassan Omer (Photo SUNA)Sudan’s Presidential Envoy for Diplomatic Contact and Negotiation for Darfur Amin Hassan Omer told the semi-official Sudan Media Center (SMC) that the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) should constitute the basis for any future peace agreement in the region.

He pointed out that he has recently held meetings with the head of African Union High Implementation Panel (AUHIP) Thabo Mbeki and the hybrid peacekeeping mission in Darfur (UNAMID) chief, Jeremiah Mamabolo, saying the meetings addressed a number of peace files but didn’t discuss the resumption of peace talks with Darfur holdout groups.

He stressed that the government is serious about meeting with Darfur movements to reach peaceful solutions to the conflict in the region.

Last April, delegations representing the Government of Sudan, Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and Sudan Liberation Movement of Minni Minnawi ended two-day discussions in Berlin without signing a pre-negotiation agreement.

The two sides say willing for a negotiated settlement but failed to agree on how to proceed. The government put on the negotiating table the DDPD, but the armed groups say they want a new process on new bases, not this framework text signed in July 2011 with other former rebel groups.

The holdout groups including the JEM and SLM-MM refused to sign the DDPD in July 2011 and called to open the framework agreement for talks.

Other groups like the Sudan Liberation Movement - Abdel Wahid (SLM-AW) have declined to join the process and rejected its outcome.

The AUHIP led by former South African President Thabo Mbeki proposed a holistic process to end the armed conflicts and produce political reforms in Sudan.

During the year 2015-2016, talks between the government and the SLM-MM and JEM failed to reach a tangible result despite international efforts to bring together the opposition groups and to narrow the gaps between them and the government.

Last February, the Peace and Security Council of the African Union (PSC) urged the AUHIP to make progress in the resolution of Darfur conflict during the upcoming three months.

The Sudanese army has been fighting a group of armed movements in Darfur since 2003. UN agencies estimate that over 300,000 people were killed in the conflict and over 2.5 million were displaced.

(ST)