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SLM-AW: Abolition of death penalty is bargaining chip

September 23 - 2019 DARFUR
Rebels of the Sudan Liberation Movement, led by Abdelwahid El Nur (File photo)
Rebels of the Sudan Liberation Movement, led by Abdelwahid El Nur (File photo)

The Sudan Liberation Movement under the leadership of Abdelwahid El Nur (SLM-AW) confirmed that the government has, so far, released no prisoners in a statement on Sunday.

In the statement, the SLM-AW said that it will not negotiate with any party while members of the movement remain in prison.

SLM-AW spokesman Mohamed El Nayer, listed 34 SLM-AW prisoners held by the government who are currently being detained in prisons in Khartoum, Port Sudan, and El Fasher.

The movement argued that the abolition of the death penalty for eight of its members does not mean anything because they were wrongfully convicted during the former regime. Thus, according to the movement, their conviction no longer has any valid legal basis. The statement described the decision of the Sovereign Council to abolish the death penalty against SLM-AW prisoners as a mere bargaining chip to kick-off negotiations.

‘Radical change’

SLM-AW leader El Nur said in August that his SLM “will adhere to the revolution until a radical change takes place and a real civilian authority is established”.

He explained that continuing with armed struggle is not the movement's option at this stage. “The SLM-AW will depend on popular struggle as an opposition tool, together with the Sudanese people, in order to reach this end, summarised in Just fall, that’s all.”

According to El Nur, “The Sudanese people who forced Al Bashir to disappear from the scene are able to overthrow the junta and all other forces that hijacked the revolution in the name of the people, and pave the way for a state based on equal citizenship”.

The Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF, a coalition of the armed movements) reached an agreement with the FFC on the peace process in Sudan in the Ethiopian capital on July 25. The SLM-AW is no part of the SRF anymore. The movement withdrew when the coalition opted for a peaceful solution instead of continuing the armed struggle. El Nur says he will only join peace negotiations after Khartoum has restored stability and security in Darfur.


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