Home | News    Tuesday 30 March 2010

JEM rebels say ready for peace talks, warn of return to war


March 29, 2010 (DOHA) – The leader of Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) accused Sudanese government of stalling the peace process in the Qatari capital and warned his group may return to war if talks fail.

Khalil Ibrahim

Khalil Ibrahim arrived since three days to Doha after the failure of meetings held in the Chadian capital with the Sudanese presidential adviser in charge of Darfur file Ghazi Salah Al-Deen. The discussion deadlocked on the power sharing issue where they failed to agree.

Chadian which brokered the framework agreement did not succeed to persuade the Sudanese parties to reach a compromise on the power sharing. Chad reportedly stopped its efforts and asked the two stakeholders to negotiate directly in Doha.

In a press conference held in Doha today, Khalil Ibrahim reiterated the readiness of his group to negotiate with the Sudanese government but warned they would return to arms if the Doha talks are not concluded successfully.

"We are still negotiating, and if the government is serious about wanting to achieve peace, then we are ready," he said. "But if peace is not reached, our position is known, and our aim is to change the regime of (President Omer) Al-Bashir. It is either a fair and comprehensive peace or we carry on with our regime change project," he added.

Sudanese government and JEM rebels signed a framework agreement in Doha on February 23 including a ceasefire agreement. They also agreed to reach a peace agreement on March 15. However, the signatories failed to ink the peace deal as pledged.

Instead of negotiating, strong distrust between the two parties pushed JEM to refuse any separate talks with a new rebel group formed the same day where they signed the framework agreement. The two parties failed also to hold direct negotiations to implement the framework agreement particularly the ceasefire agreement.

Ibrahim accused the government of violating the ceasefire several times adding that Sudanese army has undertaken military buildup and preparing for war. Khartoum also said the rebel group violated the ceasefire for twenty times since February 23.

On the other hand, the rebel leader minimized the demand of election postponement stressing that holding elections before the end of Darfur conflict would complicate ongoing efforts to reach a peaceful solution.

Khalil said that Sudanese government has refused to pay 1500 USD as individual compensation for every affected person. He also said Khartoum rejected the formation of a joint force to secure the return of IDPs and refugees to their homeland.

He further said JEM demands to maintain its troops during the interim period because it has a large army and it would be difficult to integrate it easily in the regular forces.

He also reiterated his call for the reinstatement of the former system of territorial administration when the country had been divided to nine provinces

Khalil urged Abdel Wahid Al-Nur, the leader of the rebel SLM-AW to join the peace process in order to reach a comprehensive settlement for the seven year conflict in the ravaged region.


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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.
  • 30 March 2010 08:56, by telfajbago

    Khalil speak of yourself and stop talking about Abdul Wahid because he knows well what he is doing.Since when you had been keen about the interests of the people of Darfur?

    • 31 March 2010 21:49, by kuminyandi

      Breaking news!

      SPLM withdrew its presidential candidate Yassir Arman from election.

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