Occupying Presidential Palace only way to topple Sudan regime, says rebel leader

“The route to toppling the National Congress Party is not through capturing the towns of Nyala, El Obeid, Dongola, Medani or Umm Rawaba but by occupying the Presidential Palace in Khartoum,” said SLA leader Minni Minawi.In an interview with Radio Dabanga on Wednesday, Minawi, who is also Deputy President of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) rebel coalition, stressed that the SRF, however, believes that the forces of the NCP in these towns must be defeated before the rebels can advance on Khartoum.Minawi also described the humanitarian situation in Darfur as “tragic” and held the international community “responsible for the silence and not talking about the NCP massacres, as well as the creation of the sedition between the tribes in Darfur.”“Government militias committed a massacre against the unarmed civilians in the Muhajeriya area after the withdrawal of troops. This occurred before the eyes of Unamid forces,” he said. Minawi accused Unamid of “working to conceal and blur” what he termed “the National Congress’ crimes in Darfur”.Responding to Minawi’s comments, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, head of Unamid, said that the presence in the region of some of the non-signatory movements to the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) “represents a challenge to the Mission”.In the past, Ibn Chambas has called on all parties to lay down their arms and “sit around the table of dialogue in order to stabilise their country”.The DDPD was adopted in 2011 and is designed to address the root causes of the conflict in Darfur and its consequences, including power and wealth sharing, human rights, justice and reconciliation, compensation and return, and internal dialogue.SRF coalition members, however, have not signed the treaty claiming conflicts in Sudan need to be addressed comprehensively and not partially, which is what they perceive the DDPD to be.File photo: Minni Minawi

“The route to toppling the National Congress Party is not through capturing the towns of Nyala, El Obeid, Dongola, Medani or Umm Rawaba but by occupying the Presidential Palace in Khartoum,” said SLA leader Minni Minawi.

In an interview with Radio Dabanga on Wednesday, Minawi, who is also Deputy President of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) rebel coalition, stressed that the SRF, however, believes that the forces of the NCP in these towns must be defeated before the rebels can advance on Khartoum.

Minawi also described the humanitarian situation in Darfur as “tragic” and held the international community “responsible for the silence and not talking about the NCP massacres, as well as the creation of the sedition between the tribes in Darfur.”

“Government militias committed a massacre against the unarmed civilians in the Muhajeriya area after the withdrawal of troops. This occurred before the eyes of Unamid forces,” he said. Minawi accused Unamid of “working to conceal and blur” what he termed “the National Congress’ crimes in Darfur”.

Responding to Minawi’s comments, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, head of Unamid, said that the presence in the region of some of the non-signatory movements to the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) “represents a challenge to the Mission”.

In the past, Ibn Chambas has called on all parties to lay down their arms and “sit around the table of dialogue in order to stabilise their country”.

The DDPD was adopted in 2011 and is designed to address the root causes of the conflict in Darfur and its consequences, including power and wealth sharing, human rights, justice and reconciliation, compensation and return, and internal dialogue.

SRF coalition members, however, have not signed the treaty claiming conflicts in Sudan need to be addressed comprehensively and not partially, which is what they perceive the DDPD to be.

File photo: Minni Minawi