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Sudan backtracks from deal allocating 30% power-sharing to Darfur: statement

Al-Taishi (3rd R) speaks in a joint press conference with SRF-Darfur leaders in Juba on 17 January 2020 (SC photo)
May 6, 2020 (JUBA) - Darfur armed groups participating in the Juba peace process Wednesday said the Sudanese government backtracked on an agreement to allocate 30% of power to the Darfur region.

The Darfur groups were reacting to press statements on Monday by the Sudanese government negotiator Mohamed Hassan Eltaishi saying that the parties agreed to allocate 30% of the positions in the Sovereign Council, government and transitional parliament to the Peace Bloc which includes all the movements involved in the Juba negotiations.

The four groups stressed in a joint statement that the 30% power-sharing is the demand of movements from the Darfur region participating in the negotiations for peace in Darfur.

"This percentage was set according to objective criteria, the most important of which is the population weight and the positive discrimination to involve all the people of Darfur".

"An agreement was reached in principle between the (Darfur) Track and the government delegation, but the latter has pulled back from its position during the progress of the negotiations," the statement added.

The government’s pullback led to engage in strenuous negotiations without reaching an agreement. After what it was agreed to discuss the matter with the other outstanding issues.

The parties had to meet on Wednesday, but a technical issue forced the European Union office in Juba to request the parties to postpone the meeting until Thursday.

As a result of the social distancing rules due to the spread of coronavirus pandemic, the peace meetings are held via teleconference facilitated by the EU offices in Khartoum and Juba.

The statement said that the Peace Bloc, to which Al-Taishi referred, did not present a unified negotiating position on the sharing-power, so no agreement has been reached on this particular point.

"Some of them suspended their negotiations with the government and left the venue, and some others did not participate in the process from the beginning, while many of the components of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front have signed with the government-specific agreements related to their tracks without addressing the aforementioned percentage," emphasized the statement.

The negotiations between the government and Darfur groups is the last remaining track. The discussions were supposed to focus during this round on the security arrangements.

Also, the talks are supposed to be concluded by 9 May. But seemingly the parties will extend the discussions.

(ST)