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Minnawi calls for political reconciliation in Sudan including Islamists


Minnawi, SLM-leader speaks to the media in Khartoum on 06 Feb 2021 (ST photo)
February 6, 2021 (KHARTOUM) - Minni Minnawi, leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM-MM) called for political reconciliation in the country including the former ruling party, but reiterated his call to hand over the ousted President Omer al-Bashir to the ICC.

"The political forces must reconcile in order to manage the transitional period, with the participation of all vital groups such as women, youth, pastoralists, farmers and civil society organizations," Minnawi said at a press conference on Saturday.

"We must reconcile with the National Congress Party (NCP) because it is part of the Sudanese, but that does not prevent from holding the criminals accountable," he added.

He pointed out that reconciliation should discuss the success of the transition period and how Sudan is governed, in addition to discussing the resources, customs, components and cultures of the Sudanese.

Minawi called to agree on a transitional national programme to achieve economic reforms, combating corruption, and building balanced foreign relations.

The National Congress Party of al-Bashir was dissolved by the Empowerment Removal Committee in December 2019.

Gibril Ibrahim, the head of the Justice and Equality Movement had previously made similar calls for reconciliation with the Sudanese Islamists.

His call was rejected and several others point to his membership in the NCP before to accuse him of seeking to win their support in the general elections at the end of the transition.

Further, Minnawi said that al-Bashir and others should be handed over to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

He criticized the ongoing trial of the former president in the case of financial corruption and the military coup that brought him to power. Before calling to prioritize his trial on charges of genocide, the crimes against humanity and war crimes.

In October 2020, Sudanese government pledged to hand over al-Bashir to the ICC and to cooperate with its investigation teams in all the cases.

But last December Fatou Bensouda, ICC General Prosecutor told the UN Security Council that Khartoum cancelled the visits of the ICC investigation teams to Sudan and did not sign a draft cooperation agreement.

No SLM fighters in Libya

Minnawi denied the SLM-MM’s involvement in the armed conflict in Libya but acknowledged the presence of his forces in the neighbouring country in the past.

“The presence of our forces in Libya does not mean that they participated with a party to the conflict," he added.

He went further to say that their presence in Libya was dictated by the conditions of war and not with the aim of fighting there.

The SLM-MM stressed the readiness of his forces to participate in the joint forces in Darfur after their arrival at cantonment sites.

In their last report dated 13 January 2021, the U.N. Security Council’s Panel of Independent Experts on Darfur said the armed groups continue to work with the Libyan National Army of Khalifa Haftar and developed direct contacts with his main backers, the United Arab Emirates.


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