Friday, April 12, 2024

Sudan Tribune

Plural news and views on Sudan

UN chief Annan in south Sudan to bolster peace

JUBA, Sudan, May 29 (AFP) — UN Secretary General Kofi Annan was in southern Sudan Sunday in a bid to support a a January peace deal that ended 21 years of civil war between Khartoum and southern rebels.

garang_annan.jpgOn his first visit to southern Sudan as head of the world body, Annan was scheduled to meet the regional governor in Juba before flying to Rumbek, seat of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), for talks with its leader John Garang.

His visit came on the third and final day of a whistle-stop tour of Sudan aimed at promoting humanitarian and security efforts in the western Darfur region and shoring up the north-south peace deal.

Khartoum and the SPLM signed a peace agreement in January in the Kenyan capital Nairobi.

The war pitted the mainly Christian and animist south against the Muslim and Arab-dominated central government and cost an estimated 1.5 million lives and displaced more than four million.

“You cannot have peace in one part of the country when there is serious conflict in another,” said Annan on the eve of his visit to the south.

On Friday, the UN chief warned that the north-south peace deal was in danger of crumbling for lack of sufficient resources to implement the agreement.

“Yes, we do have problems in the south. We don’t have all the funding we need. And it is a shame that in the south we have a peace agreement but we don’t have the resources required,” he said.

Annan further urged donors to split attention equally between north and south.

“What we need is additional resources to cover both crises and we are appealing to donors to really help us get the resources required to get the job done.”

The UN Security Council on March 24 approved the deployment of some 10,000 peacekeepers to shore up the north-south peace deal. Advance parties started arriving in April.

In Rumbek, Annan was also expected to meet with members of the National Constitutional Review Commission (NCRC), which is drafting an interim constitution to govern the country over the next six years.

He was due to return to Khartoum via Juba later in the day for a meeting with Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.