Leaders of Sudan’s major armed movements have called for unity in Sudan at the Cairo Forum, organised by the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) and Sudan Call coalitions of armed movements, opposition parties, and civil society organisations.
The Sudan Liberation Movement faction, led by Minni Minawi (SLM-MM), has expressed its readiness to reach a just and comprehensive peace, provided that strong guarantees are made forcing the parties not to renounce covenants.
Addressing the forum on Tuesday, Minawi stressed the need to draw lessons from the experience of the secession of South Sudan, attributing the secession to “hatred and systematic racism”.
He said that the SLM-MM gives the peace project a high priority, stressing that it will pursue peace tirelessly, and explained that the movement has agreed to the initiatives of the military council, which evolved into the Juba Declaration of Principles in September.
Minawi explained that the SRF put forward a project based on equal citizenship and the complete structure of the Sudanese state, ending the imbalances experienced by the country since the dawn of independence.
He stressed that “the new Sudan will be developed through addressing outstanding issues since independence, dismantling the old regime, establishing the foundations of equal citizenship, and the peaceful transfer of power through genuine democracy and the restoration of the rights of war victims during the transitional period, and positive discrimination of people living in the marginalised peripheries, and the establishment of effective and fair institutions for the transitional period, especially peace commissions.
“Peace is still tied to the exclusionary mentality of the centre, and considered a policy rejected,” Minawi said, stressing that the movement will work with its allies to achieve the desired change to reach a state based on equal citizenship.
Dr Jibril Ibrahim, head of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), called for broad alliances in the post-peace stage and the formulation of a historical bloc with the popular mandate to implement the programme.
In his speech to the Cairo Forum, Ibrahim highlighted the need for “more cohesion and efforts and development of the SRF and the Sudan Call to a historic bloc to bring about the required change”.
Ibrahim said that the transition from military action to peaceful negotiation is a major challenge facing the movements of the armed struggle.
Omar El Degeir, chairman of the Sudanese Congress Party (SCP), called for putting the issues of displaced persons and refugees at the top of the political agenda, which he considered “the biggest humanitarian tragedy in Sudan”
He stressed that after the fall of the regime, Sudan requires the projection of all concepts and patterns of thinking in order to put the country on a new path.
He considered the issue of peace and the end of the war of the most important issues in the transitional phase, calling for the country “to address the basic issues in order not to repeat the experiences of October and April”.
Yasir Arman, deputy head of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North faction led by Malik Agar in Blue Nile state, called for a new national government in which all forces and movements would contribute after the fall of the old regime “due to the crimes of genocide and the secession of South Sudan.
“We do not want peace for the elites and we do not seek privatisation. Those who accused us of doing so are the ones who have sought it,” he said in his speech to the forum.
He stressed that “the era of discrimination and persecution on the basis of skin colour is over,” calling on all to contribute to unite and build a new Sudan.
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