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Darfur peace file commission applauds arms collection

July 13 - 2018 DOHA
13th meeting of the Implementation Follow-up Commission of the Doha Document convenes in Qatar. Dr Amin Hassan Omar was among the high-ranking Sudanese officials present at the meeting (Unamid)
13th meeting of the Implementation Follow-up Commission of the Doha Document convenes in Qatar. Dr Amin Hassan Omar was among the high-ranking Sudanese officials present at the meeting (Unamid)

The Implementation Follow-Up Commission of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur took place in Qatar this week, concluding that the Sudanese government has made good attempts to collect illegal arms.

On Wednesday the Qatari government hosted the 13th meeting of the Implementation Follow up Commission (IFC) of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD). High-ranking government officials from Qatar and Sudan gathered for the meeting at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Doha, including Dr Amin Hassan Omar, Envoy of the Presidency for Negotiation and Diplomatic Communication on Darfur.

Joint Special Representative of the hybrid peacekeeping mission Unamid and Joint Chief Mediator (JSR/JCM), Jeremiah Kingsley Mamabolo presented a progress report on the implementation of the DDPD and provided an update on the peace process.

Following the update the meeting concluded that ‘there is need to reinvigorate the implementation of the residual issues of the DDPD’, a press statement by Unamid reads.

‘The meeting recognised and appreciated the efforts of the Government of Sudan in the collection of arms, an endeavor that has contributed to a reasonable extent in creating an environment of the current relative stability.’

Nearly one year ago, Khartoum announced a large disarmament campaign in the country, to begin with in Darfur and Kordofan. The Sudanese army and paramilitary forces were tasked to collect illegal arms and unlicensed vehicles from civilians.

The Sudanese vice-president Hasabo Abdelrahman now has threatened those who do not collaborate in the process of collection illegal weapons of serious consequences they will face. “There are punishments awaiting some of them to the extent of life imprisonment and execution.”

Unamid exit

The participants added that the IFC should have regular meetings considering the decision of the AU and the UN to speed up Unamid’s exit from Darfur. In this regard, the Mission was urged to coordinate the convening of a meeting of all IFC partners for a review.

The next meeting is planned to be held in November. In addition, Unamid received the appreciation of the entire meeting for its role in facilitating the DDPD implementation and the peace process.

In March 2017, discussions of the IFC included the voluntary return of displaced people and the re-integration of ex-combatants. The Unamid statement yesterday did not mention these topics were discussed again.

Holdout rebels

Finally the meeting called on all negotiating parties (Sudan, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and the Sudan Liberation Movement led by Minni Minawi (SLM-MM) to speed up and finalise the ongoing negotiations that will lead to a permanent cessation of hostilities agreement.

Last April, delegations representing Khartoum, the JEM and the SLM-MM ended two-day discussions in Berlin without signing a pre-negotiation agreement.

The two sides say willing for a negotiated settlement but failed to agree on how to proceed. The government put on the negotiating table the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD), but the armed groups say they want a new process on new bases, not this framework text signed in July 2011 with other former rebel groups.

The holdout groups including the JEM and SLM-MM refused to sign the DDPD in July 2011 and called to open the framework agreement for talks.

New consultations

This week the presidential envoy for diplomatic negotiation for Darfur, Dr Amin Hassan Omar said that no time limit has been set for the resumption of peace talks with the armed movements. This would be done after the completion of consultations with all parties by the African Union High-level Implementation Panel (AUHIP).

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