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SLM-TC new rebel leader reiterates rejection for negotiations with Khartoum

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October 1, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The new leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement - Transitional Council (SLM-TC) al-Hadi Idriss Yahia reiterated his commitment to the political line of the group which refuses to negotiate a peace agreement with the government.

Darfur rebel forces gather as they guard during the visit of Joint Special Representative (JSR) Ibrahim Gambari at Fanga Suk village, in East Jebel Marra (West Darfur), 88 km from Tawilla March 18, 2011 (Reuters)

The SLM-TC elected Yahia as its new chairman after the detention of its leader Nimir Abdel Rahman by the Sudanese authorities last May in North Darfur during armed clashes with the SLM-TC and the SLM-Minni Minnawi.

In a statement issued after his election on 29 September, Yahia said the group aims to achieve a regime change in Sudan and to establish a regime that upholds the values of justice, freedom and democracy.

"The building of a real Sudanese state can only be achieved by overthrowing the current regime," he stressed.

He further said that all those who are involved in Darfur war crimes, including President Omer al-Bashir, should be brought to justice.

He stressed they cannot pardon them "Because we do not have this right, but the victims alone decide this in the courts that will be set up for this purpose".

Yahia has been elected unanimously at a meeting held at an undisclosed location on 26 August 2017.

The new rebel leader joined the SLM in 2004, and splinted from the SLM-AW for the first time in 2006 but reintegrated the group again in 2011 when al-Nur issued the New Beginning Declaration. Nonetheless, he distanced himself again with Nimir and other and decided to established the Transitional Council in 2013.

He was the political secretary of the SLM-Juba Unity, a group that the United Nations mediators sought to build up within their efforts to reach an inclusive peace deal for the conflict in 2007. Also, the new rebel leader is known for his rejection of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur.

(ST)

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