Home | News    Thursday 15 June 2006

Sudan seeks France help to restore relations with Chad - FM

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June 14, 2006 (PARIS) — Sudan has invited France to mediate with its neighboring Chad; which accuses Khartoum of backing Chadian rebels and broken off diplomatic relations, a Sudanese minister said Wednesday.

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Lam Akol (ST)

The visiting Sudanese Foreign minister Lam Akol told reporter in a press conference held in Paris he asked France to use its influence and help to restore bilateral relations with Chad.

Chad broke off diplomatic relations with Sudan on Friday 14 May, a day after an attack on N’Djamena by rebel forces seeking to topple Deby, who says they are actively supported by Beshir’s regime.

The minister who denied any support to the Chadian rebels said it’s difficult to control the whole border with Chad adding to use Sudanese territories does not mean that Khartoum is backing Chadian insurgents.

"To claim the attack on N’Djamena is from Sudan, that is extending the theory beyond what it can take," he said. "That is called scapegoating."

Lam Akol informed his French counterpart of Sudan’s readiness to take in consideration any proposal that Paris sees it could help to resolve the conflict. Khartoum fears Chad could harm the fragile Darfur peace deal by supporting the holdout rebels.

Lam Akol said N’djamena didn’t implement Tripoli agreement which stipulates that Chad has to deploy military observers with Libya, Congo, Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, as well as Sudan in three sites: al-Fasher, al-Gineina and the Chadian Abéché.

The February 8 agreement signed by Chadian and Sudanese leaders in Tripoli came after N’Djamena declared itself in a state of war with Khartoum in December amid growing violence on the border.

The Sudanese minister met, besides the French Minister of Foreign affairs, with the minister of international cooperation and the presidential advisor for African affairs. He discussed Darfur Peace Agreement, Chad and the pledged donors’ aid to the Southern Sudan construction.

He also met French business community (MEDF) inviting its members to invest in Sudan.

(ST)

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