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Conditions for Darfur collection of weapons are not met: JEM leader

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JEM leader Gibril Ibrahim talks to reporters in Addis Ababa on 13 August 2016 (ST Photo)
August 24, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) leader Gibril Ibrahim called to disarm the ruling National Congress Party (NCP)’s militias and to conduct a weapons collection campaign in Darfur after achieving a comprehensive peace in the region.

In an opinion article extended to Sudan Tribune on Thursday, the leader of the holdout rebel group slammed a disarmament campaign launched y the government this week saying the authorities have first to address the causes that pushed people to hold arms before to start this step.

He said they support the weapons collection "in principle" stressing " But the conditions in Sudan in general and in the regions where weapons are intended to be collected are not yet met".

He further enumerated three cause for the proliferation of arms underlining the failure of different governments since the independence to provide security for individuals and groups, the armament of some ethnic groups by several governments including that of President Omer al-Bashir, and tribal conflicts over land and its natural resources.

FAIR WEAPONS COLLECTION

Based on this analysis, JEM leader said a "fair collection of weapons" should be undertaken after the achievement of peace and the implementation of security arrangements. In such a way, the government does need to arm some tribes to counter an insurgency, he stressed.

He went further to say that above all the regime needs first to collect weapons from the NCP members and its militias. The second step, according to Ibrahim, is to "collect the weapons of tribal militias loyal to the regime under their various names, so they would not be used in tribal wars as they do now".

On Wednesday, violence erupted on the campus of El-Fasher University between the supporters of rebel groups and the NCP members. The latter used their arms and wounded several students.

Also, Musa Hilal, the tribal chief and notorious leader of the Janjaweed Militia says he is opposed to the weapons collection campaign because his Border Guards militia will be merged in the Rapid Support Forces militia which is now part of the Sudanese army

The government says the weapons collection campaign comes within the framework of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) and calls on the non-signatory groups to join the document and conclude peace agreements on its basis.

JEM and the Sudan Liberation Movement - Minni Minnawi refuse the DDPD and call for a new peace process saying this framework is no longer valid for peace in Darfur.

(ST)

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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