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Sudan Tribune

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Sudanese President, First Vice President to address peace celebration

Jan 7, 2007 (KHARTOUM) — President Omer Al-Bashir, and the First Vice-President and President of South Sudan Government, Salva Kiir Mayardit, will address the national celebrations marking the second anniversary for the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).

Kiir_al_bashir.jpgThe celebration will be held on Tuesday in Juba amid wide participation of the states and partners of the Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) as well as the regional and international organizations.

The Peace Day celebrations coincides with the 51st anniversary of Sudan’s Independence Day, and when all the constitutional, legislative and executive institutions have been set up as stipulated in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

The peace deal between the government of the ruling National Congress Party and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) ended a 21-year civil war — Africa’s longest — that killed about 2 million people.

Ambassador Tom Vraalsen, head of the commission in charge of evaluating the implementation of the CPA, last December said that Darfur crisis had diverted the attention of world powers away from backing the CPA which faces serious delays.

Tension has escalated between the former northern and southern foes after violent clashes between the SPLM and the northern Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) in Malakal late in November in which 150 people were killed, the United Nations said.

The two sides are also at odds over other issues such as demarcation and the ownership of oil fields, and Abyei status.

Big aid pledges at a subsequent aid conference in Oslo came from the European Commission which promised about $765 million, Britain $545 million, Norway $250 million and the Netherlands $220 million.

The World Bank said in March that more than $1.1 billion of aid money was spent on urgent humanitarian needs mostly in the south. Aid needed in southern Sudan alone stands at $2.5 billion, the World Bank says.

“This does not leave much for development,” Vraalsen, a Norwegian diplomat, said.

(ST)

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