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Sudan’s Bashir, former rebel leader discuss peace in Darfur

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March 9, 2018 (EL-OBEID) - The Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir and the Minister of State at Federal Government Chamber, Abu Al-Gasim Imam have discussed the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD).

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President Omer al-Bashir speaking at the opening of the second parliamentary session 19 Oct 2015 (Photo SUNA)

Imam, who is also the chairman of the former rebel Sudan Liberation Movement (Second Revolution) SLM-SR, told reporters following the meeting that they discussed the security arrangement agreement signed between his movement and the Sudanese government.

He pointed out that al-Bashir is resolved to complete the implementation of the security arrangement in order to transform the SLM-SR into a political party.

Imam added the meeting also discussed the work of the peace commissions in Darfur especially with regard to the voluntary return of IDPs and refugees and the reconstruction efforts.

The minister further stressed the security situation in Darfur is now stable following the implementation of the disarmament campaign.

The Sudanese army has been fighting a group of armed movements in Darfur since 2003. UN agencies estimate that over 300,000 people were killed in the conflict and over 2.5 million were displaced.

Doha brokered the Darfur peace negotiations which resulted in the signing of the DDPD by the Sudanese government and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) in July 2011. Also, a dissident JEM joined the DDPD in April 2013.

It is noteworthy that Imam has split from the SLM led by Abdel-Wahid al-Nour in 2007 and signed Abuja peace agreement with the Sudanese government. However, he rejoined the rebellion in 2010 accusing the government of dishonouring the deal.

In January 2017, Imam signed a peace agreement with the Sudanese government in the Qatari capital, Doha on the bases of the DDPD. He later joined the government-led national dialogue conference and became a minister in the Government of National Consensus.

Three rebel movements including SLM-MM led by Minnawi Minnawi, Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) led by Gibril Ibrahim and SLM-AW led by Abdel-Wahid al-Nour didn’t join the DDPD.

JEM and SLM-MM, who have engaged in peace talks with the Sudanese government under the auspices of the African Union, call for opening the document for negotiations, saying some issues were ignored or not fairly treated, but Khartoum rejects such request.

SLM-AW, however, is not part of the African Union-mediated peace talks. The rebel group rejects negotiating a peace agreement with Khartoum government unless the government militias are disarmed and displaced civilians return to their original areas.

(ST)

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