Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Sudan Tribune

Plural news and views on Sudan

United States presses Sudan on peace deal

WASHINGTON, April 5 (Reuters) – The United States said on Monday it is sending a senior official to Kenya to help complete an accord that will end more than two decades of civil war in southern Sudan.

“They are so close that they really need to make that demonstrated effort to finish the agreement … this week,” said Julie Reside, a State Department spokeswoman.

Acting Assistant Secretary of Charles Snyder plans to depart on Monday night for Naivasha, Kenya, where talks between the Islamist government in Khartoum and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement have been taking place.

Secretary of State Colin Powell spoke with key parties to the negotiations over the weekend and “urged them to continue their talks,” Reside said. “In our view it looks like they are close enough that with some application they should be able to reach agreement. We’re encouraging that, to help them get to that final step.”

The conflict in Sudan, which has claimed about 2 million lives, broadly pits the Islamic government in Khartoum against the mainly animist, Christian south. It is complicated by issues of oil, ethnicity and ideology.

The talks have stalled in recent weeks over the status of the oil-rich Abyei area, which is claimed by both sides.

Earlier on Monday, Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir told the Sudanese parliament a deal is very close and would be signed soon, although he did not give any date.