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SCP: 'Pre-meeting attempts to save Sudan dialogue'

October 2 - 2015 KHARTOUM
Head of the Sudanese Congress Party Ibrahim El Sheikh (iPetitions)
Head of the Sudanese Congress Party Ibrahim El Sheikh (iPetitions)

The Sudanese Congress Party (SCP) has denied that any of the allied opposition parties has approved to participate in the national dialogue next week. It hopes that a preparatory meeting in Ethiopia with government delegates will save the national dialogue process. Meanwhile, the leaders of Sudan's armed movements denied media reports that stated they were travelling to a meeting with the national dialogue committee in Chad.

“The government is trying to promote this matter,” said SCP Political Secretary Mastour Ahmed Mohamed, pointing to earlier statements that the National Consensus Forces (NCF, an alliance of opposition parties) has decided to join the dialogue conference. The NCF and the Sudan Appeal parties stick to their stated terms that have to be implemented in Sudan, prior to their participation.

He told Radio Dabanga in an interview that all parties to the Sudan Appeal want to participate in the preparatory national dialogue meeting, which he said will be held in November. The party's political secretary expects a delegation of the dialogue's steering committee, the 7+7, to join their pre-dialogue meeting in Addis Ababa.

Mastour Ahmed explained that in the event that the government provides guarantees to the armed movements and other concessions, the national dialogue including all political and rebel forces can be held in Sudan. “The preparatory meeting is an attempt to save the national dialogue,” he said, claiming that the NCF will reject any attempt to dilute the dialogue.

Rebels not in Chad meeting

Darfur’s rebel movements have commented on media reports that claimed that their delegates were heading toards the Chad capital to meet with members of the Nation Dialogue 7+7 coordination committee on Wednesday, as part of an initiative led by Deby to encourage the Darfur movements to join Sudan's national dialogue.

However, the leader of the rebel SLM-MM, Minni Minawi, denied to Sudan Tribune that he was aware of any meeting with Deby in N’djamena, saying: “I haven’t received any contacts as of yet and I will not visit Chad at this time”.

Meanwhile, the spokesman for the JEM said in a statement on Wednesday that his movement has no plans or intentions to meet with the regime in N’djamena or any other capital cities, describing the media reports as “totally unfounded”. “According to our modest information, SLM-MM and SLM-AW won’t be part of the alleged N’djamena meetings too,” he said.

The leader of the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement for Justice-Karbino (SLMJ-K), El Tahir Abubakr Hajar, however, told Sudan Tribune on Wednesday that he received an invitation from the Chadian government, and called upon the other movements to join.

The opening session of the national dialogue is scheduled for 10 October in Khartoum. President Omar Al Bashir proposed the broad Sudanese dialogue between political parties, rebel movements, and civil society organisations in January 2014 to end the political crises and the civil wars in the country. The armed movements and the opposition parties in the country welcome the idea of a dialogue, but stress that the dialogue should be held abroad and led by a neutral body, such as the AU High-level Implementation Panel.

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