Home | News    Thursday 9 September 2010

US says South Sudan independence ’inevitable’, warns of “ticking time bomb”

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September 8, 2010 (KHARTOUM) – The United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday said that her country is working hard with international partners to defuse “a ticking time bomb” in Sudan ahead of a vote in January 2011 on what she termed the “inevitable" independence of south Sudan.

U.S Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010. (AP Photo) South Sudan’s referendum on self-determination is the culmination of a floundering peace deal which in 2005 ended two decades of civil war between the Arab-dominated north and the mainly Christian and animist south. Southern Sudanese are widely expected to vote in favor of their own independent state.

The signatories of the agreement, the National Congress Party (NCP) in the north and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) in the south, are currently engaged in talks with little progress over post-referendum issues, including oil wealth, borders, citizenship as well as foreign debts.

However, preparations for the plebiscite itself are seriously behind schedule due to bickering between the two parties over appointment of the commission tasked to organize the exercise.

Clinton’s remarks come in the run-up to a US-organized meeting due to be held on the margins of the UN’s general assembly session on 24 September to garner international support for the referendum and discuss the situation in Sudan’s troubled western region of Darfur. The US invited delegations of the NCP and the SPLM to attend the meeting.

The meeting’s profile has been raised by US confirmation that US president Barack Obama will attend the meeting.

“The situation north/south is a ticking time-bomb of enormous consequence," Clinton told audience after a speech on U.S. foreign policy at the Council on Foreign Relations.

She further said that the time remaining for referendum date, which is in January 2011, is “very short” and later added that “the real problem is what happens when the inevitable happens and the referendum is passed and the south declares independence."

Clinton declared that the US had put "all hands on deck" to assist referendum preparations, adding that her country had recently sent the former senior U.S. diplomat Princeton Lyman to help the SPLM and the NCP to iron out post-referendum issues.

But she said that despite international efforts, north and south Sudan will have to make concessions on secession arrangements in order to avoid setback to violence.

"Even if we did everything perfectly ... the reality is that this is going to be a very hard decision for the north to accept," Clinton said.

"So we’ve got to figure out some ways to make it worth their while to peacefully accept an independent south and for the south to recognize that unless they want more years of warfare and no chance to build their own new state they’ve got to make some accommodations with the north as well" she added.

"What happens to the oil revenues?" she said. "And if you’re in the north and all of a sudden you think a line’s going to be drawn and you’re going to lose 80 percent of the oil revenues, you’re not a very enthusiastic participant. What are the deals that can possibly be made that will limit the potential of violence?"

"Even if we did everything perfectly and everyone else — the Norwegians, the Brits, everybody who is weighing in on this — did all that they could, the reality is that this is going to be a very hard decision for the north to accept," she said.

Clinton acknowledged that the chief US focus has shifted from Darfur region to ensuring a smooth secession for the south. However, she said that the situation in Darfur was “dangerous, difficult, not stable."

The conflict in Sudan’s westernmost region of Darfur region broke out in 2003, just as south Sudan war was heading to its end. A harsh counterinsurgency campaign mounted by the central government against rebels belonging mostly to African tribe has triggered one of the worst humanitarian crises in recent history. The UN estimates that the conflict has killed 300.000 people and displaced more than 2 millions.

OBAMA TO ATTEND SUDAN MEETING

In New York, US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice on Wednesday told reporters that "President Obama has accepted the (U.N.) Secretary-General’s invitation to the high-level meeting on Sudan."

Rice said that Obama "sees this meeting on the 24th as a very important vehicle for focusing international attention on ... (the referendum) as Sudan approaches really the last critical 100 days before that vote takes place."

Meanwhile in Khartoum, Sudan’s official news agency, SUNA, reported yesterday that Clinton had made a phone call to Vice-President Ali Osman Muhammad Taha and expressed “gratitude” for the efforts exerted by the Sudanese authorities in securing the safe release an American aid worker who was kidnapped in Darfur region.

According to SUNA, Clinton also expressed “relief over the progress made on the referendum issues” and her country’s support for “ongoing efforts to realize peace and stability in Darfur.”

In response, SUNA said that Taha had reiterated the government’s commitment to hold the referendum and achieve peace in Darfur.

The U.S. state department spokesman P.J. Crowley said that Clinton also called South Sudan president Salva Kiir "encourage them to continue everything they can do in the coming weeks and months to promote full implementation of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement and make preparations for the referendum in early January,"

(ST)

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  • 9 September 2010 08:02, by MIMAMA

    The South is ready to secede and ward off all the repercussion it may face in the event of an independent.

    It is time Americans come on board and witness the history being achieved.

    repondre message

    • 9 September 2010 08:45, by thieleling

      Dear Readers,

      This is a smart-bombs situation. The NO-fly Zone kind of a situation. Unless the U.S decides to drop-smart bombs on the NIF-regime comes January, 09, 2011, a war of unimaginable scale would break-out unless south sudanese unity disintegrated before that day and the SPLA military divides itself.

      It is catch-22 for the U.S. either to be the fox or use the military forces. The U.S. chooses the former, unfortunately. But this is truly a Kosovo-like case for the U.S. government. If Obama wants Kossovo, this is his moment though Afghanistan or Irag hang in his head. That country’s leadership is charged with carrying out genocide in its different region. Serbia was never charged with this violence scale before president Clinton decided to drop the Smart-Bombs on the European nation in 1998, and got the desire result from the air-assaults on that country.

      Yes, it is paramount for the U.S. to defused the "ticking time bomb", but it is also indeed comes a bit too little too late to prevent the "inevitable" Independence of South Sudan. The war will break out eventually, no matter what the International Community does unless the Obama Administration decides to REALLY use stick and not persuasion at this late hour. Unless the U.S. and its alliances(Africans included) decide to imposed no Flight-Zone over south sudan immediately after January 09, 2011, the war is eminent in Sudan.

      Thanks Hillary Clinton, the U.S Secretary of States for using a lawyerly arguments and tried to let the Sudanese know what’s at stakes for both sides.

      It also seems the U.S intelligence co-operations with the NIF ’s NISS hurts the "gun boat diplomacy" the U.S. can use on Sudan’s NIF regime.

      So, the U.S. seems to protect its public relations and world image based on the above statements. So, if something go wrong, the U.S. would say it already tries its best and alert the world before the hell break loose on Sudan. The very own U.S. Intelligence Community predicted the worst coming violence in Sudan already.

      So, now the matter is to use the braintrust than the military forces for the U.S. on Sudan. However, nothing is going to come out of this eventually as far as the foxes are not sleeping in the NCP.

      Therefore, Saying, "Even if we did everything perfectly ... the reality is that this is going to be a very hard decision for the north to accept," is about face-saving kind of public relation statement. The U.S. already knows what would happen and are in it for damage control whether its image or the violence-scale that comes after the Referendum. Rwanda or Somalia, anyone? What a world!!

      repondre message

      • 9 September 2010 09:15, by Gatwech

        Bravo US for your bold preparations.

        repondre message

      • 10 September 2010 08:33, by Biliu

        Thieleling, I partially agree to your analyses over the statement of the USA secretary of state (Hillary Clinton) as some may blow horn over it, specially the NCP, Clinton is not expressing her country’s foreign policy on Sudan, simply she’s stating a reading that we all know and expecting, if NCP continue the game of delaying the referendum process (something they are really good at) then southerners will force to resort to other means will insure their right for self-determination, NCP will not accept the outcomes and declare war against the south.
        If international community (the facilitators of 2005 CPA) is welling to avoid a full scale war in Sudan, then they have to insure that referendum is conducted on its due time and on a manner that will make its outcomes acceptable to NCP and the international community, only then Clinton’s readings might be avoided.
        On the other hand, she hinted that South should offer concession to the North “north and south Sudan will have to make concessions on secession arrangements in order to avoid setback to violence.” My guess would be [the sharing of the South wealth] with the north even if the south seceded, something I find very hard to accept and I firmly believe will not be accepted by the south.
        What we (the southerners) currently need from the 2005 CPA facilitators is a strong support which will make the referendum conducted on its due time and will insure that its outcomes are acceptable, any other options will be waste of time and energy.

        repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 08:05, by Bayugopai

    Clinton seems to agree with my prior assessment that there is no real confidence that the North will honor its word in the CPA. (8-24-10 US envoy Gration brokered breakthrough in referendum body deadlock.) I concluded Yasir Arman’s withdrawal from the presidential election under NCP threat to break the CPA proved there is no good faith in the NCP..

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 08:09, by Matot de Akech Matot

    Thank Hillary Clinton , south sudan is really need independence for sure we just longing this freedom for very very long time struggling since sudan get independence in 1956 . Heeeey God open our way .

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 08:21, by paul baak anyaar

    I like the way Mrs. Clinton termed it, "inevitable independence of South Sudan." We need the help of all well-wishers around the world in order to avoid a possible setback to violence. South Sudanese are going to divorce the North come January 9, 2011. The North wouldn’t accept this, the South wouldn’t condone any obstacle on their way to an independent state. So during the meeting, I want Americans, Brits, and other members of the democratising community to remember that Southerners need your voices more than ever because nobody relishes the idea of war in the circumstances where one deserves one’s right - the right to self-governance in this case!

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 08:44, by thieleling

    Dear Readers,

    This is a smart-bombs situation. The NO-fly Zone kind of a situation. Unless the U.S decides to drop-smart bombs on the NIF-regime comes January, 09, 2011, a war of unimaginable scale would break-out unless south sudanese unity disintegrated before that day and the SPLA military divides itself.

    It is catch-22 for the U.S. either to be the fox or use the military forces. The U.S. chooses the former, unfortunately. But this is truly a Kosovo-like case for the U.S. government. If Obama wants Kossovo, this is his moment though Afghanistan or Irag hang in his head. That country’s leadership is charged with carrying out genocide in its different region. Serbia was never charged with this violence scale before president Clinton decided to drop the Smart-Bombs on the European nation in 1998, and got the desire result from the air-assaults on that country.

    Yes, it is paramount for the U.S. to defused the "ticking time bomb", but it is also indeed comes a bit too little too late to prevent the "inevitable" Independence of South Sudan. The war will break out eventually, no matter what the International Community does unless the Obama Administration decides to REALLY use stick and not persuasion at this late hour. Unless the U.S. and its alliances(Africans included) decide to imposed no Flight-Zone over south sudan immediately after January 09, 2011, the war is eminent in Sudan.

    Thanks Hillary Clinton, the U.S Secretary of States for using a lawyerly arguments and tried to let the Sudanese know what’s at stakes for both sides.

    It also seems the U.S intelligence co-operations with the NIF ’s NISS hurts the "gun boat diplomacy" the U.S. can use on Sudan’s NIF regime.

    So, the U.S. seems to protect its public relations and world image based on the above statements. So, if something go wrong, the U.S. would say it already tries its best and alert the world before the hell break loose on Sudan. The very own U.S. Intelligence Community predicted the worst coming violence in Sudan already.

    So, now the matter is to use the braintrust than the military forces for the U.S. on Sudan. However, nothing is going to come out of this eventually as far as the foxes are not sleeping in the NCP.

    Therefore, Saying, "Even if we did everything perfectly ... the reality is that this is going to be a very hard decision for the north to accept," is about face-saving kind of public relation statement. The U.S. already knows what would happen and are in it for damage control whether its image or the violence-scale that comes after the Referendum. Rwanda or Somalia, anyone? What a world!!

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 10:35, by DASODIKO

    I hope its not too late! Gration has given enough cookies to NCP while thousands were killed in South Sudan since he was given Sudan desk.

    I am afraid the NCP might show its real intentions in the coming days while we come closer to referandum. I am waiting to see what kind of a stick USA would give to its partners of counter terroists fight?????????

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 11:08, by Achouth

    American administration, need to push and put some tough measures down by pressuring Al-Bashire to make sure that the World is unable to afford and 2011 Darfur catastrophes in the South.
    Democratic values and policies need to be put aside by Obama Administration and pick up G W Bush policy for it to deal with Sudan government.

    It is good to hear Pres. Obama will be able to attend the UN -Sudan case meeting.
    Tough measures need to be put on the table.

    repondre message

  • 9 September 2010 15:25, by Lok T Simon

    Independence of Southern Sudan is an inevitable for sure and also very essential for Bashir regime in Khartoum to understand the point clearly that, failure for his regime to accepts the rights of Southern Sudan after declaration of independence of Southern Sudan will mean different things.
    Thank you secretary of state Hillary Clinton for pointing out that Southern Sudan’s referendum on self-determination was "the Culmination of floundering peace deal which in 2005 ended two decades of civil war between North and South Sudan" for sure it was, otherwise if it wasn’t mentioned that southern Sudan will have referendum on self determination after 6 years, then nobody from Southern Sudan side would have accepted the lying words from Khartoum regime. So, 6 years are nearly off and we are waiting eagerly for our rights.

    Come on world community and witness our newly lives, because we have been suffering in the hands of Arabs for long long time.

    Thanks

    Lok T. Simon

    repondre message

    • 9 September 2010 18:29, by Alpha Yankee

      The invitation by the UN-Chief will solve atleast some of the Sudanese problems, i think south Sudan needs to be represented by somebody like Dr. Riek who in most cases got involved in all the burning issues that hinders the north-south peace deal implementation for the last five and half years, however’ this is my own view and there is nothing like triblism on top of this,
      Thanks
      Ayul Yusif’

      repondre message

      • 10 September 2010 01:42, by Abuoi Jook

        Thank you American’s top foreign administration and American government in general. It’s upon southerners now to chart the way forward as you already voiced out your stance. Kiir’s administration has to do every possible move towards the realisation of what you Clinton termed "inevitable independence South" comes Jan. 9, 2011. High hope remains for the south though there are signs that North would not accept results,the world’s most powerful nation is behind us, what else?.Cheers

        repondre message

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