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Sudan says ready for successful meetings on Abyei

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August 10, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan has reiterated its keenness for successful meetings next week on the disputed area of Abyei, said the Sudanese foreign minister following a meeting with a visiting tripartite delegation from the African Union, United Nations and the UN Security Council on Thursday.

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UN peacekeepers from Ethiopia patrol the outskirts of the disputed Abyei town that straddles the border between Sudan and South Sudan on 16 September 2013 (Photo: Reuters/Andreea Campeanu)

The African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) organise next week two meetings in Addis Ababa for The Abyei Joint Oversight Committee (AJOC) and the traditional leaders from the Ngok-Dinka and Misseriya communities.

The parties are supposed to reach a deal on the formation of a joint administration and ways to promote peaceful coexistence between the two communities.

In a meeting with the visiting delegation, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Atta al-Manan Bakheit said that his government is keen for the success of the upcoming meetings.

"The visit of the tripartite delegation comes in anticipation of the upcoming meeting of the AJOC in Addis Ababa on the 16th of this month and will be followed by a meeting of the community leaders on 17 August," said Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Gharib Allah Khidir in a statement released after the meeting.

The tripartite delegation, according to the statement, expressed, their desire that the next week meetings be successful and move forward towards the formation of Abyei joint interim administration.

For his part, the Sudanese official stressed the keenness of the Government of Sudan to make the expected meeting successful and reiterated Khartoum full commitment to the provisions of the agreement of June 20, 2011, particularly the establishment of administrative mechanisms.

Further, he underlined his country’s keenness to activating the Joint Border Verification and Monitoring Mechanism (JBVMM) and implementing all the agreements and arrangements related to border security.

Last Wednesday the Security Council held a consultations meeting on Abyei and the JBVMM deployment.

On 15 May, the 15-member body adopted a resolution, renewing the mandate of UNISFA until 15 November and to warned that it would withdraw its support for the joint border monitoring force if the two countries continue to refuse its deployment

Sudan says ready for the joint administration but the Ngok Dinka refuse this interim administration saying it is time to fix the fate of the disputed area through a referendum without the participation of the Sudanese nomads.

Also, on the JBVMM which is part of the Cooperation Agreement of 27 September 2012, it is also Juba who refuse the operationalisation of the buffer zone and the deployment of the joint border forces with the support of UNISFA.

The former chief of staff Paul Malong was strongly opposed to the border demilitarised zone as it includes parts of Mile 14 an area disputed by his ethnic group Malwal Dinka and the Sudanese Rizeigat.

(ST)

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