Home | News    Tuesday 29 May 2012

Qatar urges international financial support to peace in Darfur

May 28, 2012 (KHARTOUM) — Qatar urged the international community to provide the necessary financial support to implement a peace agreement the Sudanese government signed last year with a former rebel group in Darfur.

Qatari Deputy Prime Minister Ahmed bin Abdallah al-Mahmoud meets with the US Senior Adviser for Darfur, Dane Smith in Doha on Monday 28 May (photo QNA)

The call was made by the Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Ahmed bin Abdallah al-Mahmoud in a speech he delivered at the third meeting of the High Follow-Up Committee for Peace in Darfur (HFCPD) held in Doha on Monday.

Sudanese government which is facing important financial difficulties, failed to fulfill its financial commitments for the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) signed on 14 July.

El-Tijani Sissi, head of Darfur Regional Authority (DRA) who has failed to get the needed money to establish the headquarters of his administration and pay the salaries of his ministers and staff, warned last April the Sudanese parliament about alarming situation.

First Vice President Ali Osman Taha had to intervene and instructed the finance ministry to start paying some of the $200 million dollars the DRA needs to implement the peace deal.

The Qatari deputy prime minister who mediated the deal with Burkina Faso’s Foreign Minister, Djibril Bassolé, praised the efforts done by Khartoum to transfer the money due for the Darfur reconstruction fund despite Sudan’s economic crisis, caused by the secession of oil-rich South Sudan.

Al-Mahmoud, told the representatives of the UN Security Council’s five permanent members and European Union they have to admit the "financial gap" and to "extend a helping hand" to ensure the commitment of all the Sudanese parties to the DDPD.

He further said that an international donors’ conference will be held to support the implementation of Doha agreement, the reconstruction and development of Darfur.

He pointed out that a good deal cannot succeed if it does not meet the needed conditions for its implementation.

A donors’ conference for Darfur was held in Egypt in March 2010 more than a year before the signing of the DDPD. But it failed to collect more than $850 million.

The United States, European countries, Australia and Japan, at the time, promised generous aid and pledged continued support for the people of Darfur but did not make any formal commitment at the Cairo conference.

Sissi said recently they need eight billion dollars to implement rehabilitation, development and reconstruction projects in Darfur. Qatar and Sudan are committed to pay $4 billion, he said adding they expect to collect additional $4 billion from the conference.

Al-Mahmoud told the meeting that his country earmarked $31 million to implement early recovery programs including health centers, schools, and potable water and electricity projects besides the establishment of police stations.

Sissi also disclosed that Qatar donated $6 million for the newly-established regional authority in Darfur.

The meeting was attended by the Chadian foreign minister, Moussa Al-faki, Sudan’s state minister at the presidency Amin Hassan Omer, Tigani Sissi DRA chairman, UNMAID chief Ibrahim Gambari and US Senior Adviser for Darfur Dane Simth besides a number of representatives UNSC permanent members and regional organisations.