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Sudanese presidential aide expects to reach agreement with rebels soon


January 13, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese presidential assistant Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid has expected to reach peace agreements with the rebel movements during the coming rounds of talks pointing to favourable domestic, regional and international circumstance.

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Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid (SUNA Photo)

The Sudanese army has been fighting Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/North (SPLM-N) rebels in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states since 2011 and the armed movements in Darfur since 2003.

The latest round of talks last November between the Sudanese government and the SPLM-N and Darfur rebels have stalled over issues pertaining to the security, humanitarian and political arrangements.

Hamid, who is also the government chief negotiator for the Two Areas talks, said “the internal, regional and international circumstances are favourable to achieving peace and no one wants war”.

In an interview with the official news agency (SUNA), Hamid renewed the government commitment to achieve a comprehensive peace, expecting the coming rounds of talks to be more serious.

“The two sides overcome procrastination, tricking and prevarication and have determined the objective [of the talks] ,” he said.

“Fortunately, all circumstances are now favourable, and the world wants peace but most importantly, the people in Darfur and the Two Areas wish to achieve peace and stability... no one wants war,” he added.

The presidential assistant pointed they are waiting for the African mediation to set a date for a meeting to agree on the procedural issues leading to the participation of the rebels in the internal dialogue.

He said the informal talks with the SPLM-N is linked to holding a preparatory meeting to agree on the required procedures for joining the dialogue, stressing the rebels agree that dialogue on national issues must include the other political forces.

Hamid denied existence of any political detainees, pointing to the presidential decrees pertaining to creating conducive environment for holding the dialogue including the ceasefire, release of political prisoners and pardoning rebel leaders who want to join the dialogue.

Since last August, President Omer al-Bashir declared several times a cessation of hostilities in South Kordofan, Blue Nile and Darfur and offered amnesty for the rebels who are willing to join the national dialogue.

The presidential aide denounced the SPLM-N for carrying out 67 attacks in South Kordofan and Blue Nile since president Omer al-Bashir declared the ceasefire, saying the movement doesn’t appreciate the suffering of the people in those areas.

Hamid further said the political scene consists of two groups, noting that one of them seeks to resolve Sudan’s problems through dialogue while the other aims to resolve them by the force of arms.

“I think the group which supports dialogue would win [over the other group]”, he said

Regarding press reports about the return of the leader of the National Umma Party (NUP) al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, Hamid said any Sudanese party has the opportunity to join the dialogue as it is considered the most important national project after independence.

Al-Mahdi is residing in Egypt since August 2014, after the signing of Paris Declaration with the rebel groups. At the time Sudanese officials threatened to arrest him for breaching a government decision banning contact with the rebel groups.


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