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Sudan offers amnesty for rebel groups, calls on opposition to join national dialogue

August 21, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir has reiterated the call for the holdout groups to join the national dialogue in order to contribute to nation building.

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Members of Darfur rebel group (JEM)

In a speech on the occasion of Eid al-Adha celebration on Tuesday, al-Bashir renewed amnesty for arms bearers who accept to lay down arms and join the peace process.

He expressed full commitment to implement the National Document, stressing adherence to peace and dialogue as a means to overcome all differences and obstacles.

Al-Bashir also pointed out that the external challenges facing the country have directly contributed to the economic situation, saying the government and the Sudanese people would join hands to overcome these challenges and achieve security, peace and stability.

In January 2014, al-Bashir called on political parties and armed groups to engage in a national dialogue to discuss four issues, including ending the civil war, allowing political freedoms, fighting against poverty and revitalizing national identity.

In October 2016, political forces participating in the dialogue concluded the process by signing the National Document which includes the general features of a future constitution to be finalised by transitional institutions.

A National Consensus Government was installed in May 2017 to implement the outcome of the dialogue conference.

The opposition groups boycotted the national dialogue because the government didn’t agree to a humanitarian truce with the armed groups and due to its refusal to implement a number of confidence-building measures aiming to create a conducive environment in the country before to hold an inclusive dialogue.

(ST)