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Sudan govt., Darfur rebels in talks in Ethiopia

January 25 - 2016 DBERZI
Dr Jibril Ibrahim of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM)
Dr Jibril Ibrahim of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM)

On Saturday, representatives of the Sudanese government and two holdout Darfur rebel movements met for informal peace talks in Ethiopia’s Dberzi.

The meetings between Khartoum, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), and the Sudan Liberation Movement led by Minni Minawi (SLM-MM), are aimed at reaching a settlement between the parties to the conflict as soon as possible.

In a statement on Sunday, JEM Deputy Secretary for Foreign Relations and International Cooperation Sharif Jarelnabi said that both parties will continue the discussions on the humanitarian and security files. “The participation of the JEM in informal meetings with government’s delegates does not mean more than a continuation of the negotiations on a cessation of hostilities for humanitarian purposes.”

The movement further strongly criticised the current government’s security and military operations in Jebel Marra, “where tens of thousands of people are affected”.

'Holistic approach'

Peace negotiations between Khartoum and the two Darfur rebel movements, under the auspices of the AU High-level Implementation Panel, reached a deadlock again last November.

The rebels opt for a ‘holistic approach’ to the various wars and crises in the country, preferably by a peaceful regime change. The Sudanese government insists on tackling the armed conflicts in Darfur, and the Two Areas (South Kordofan and the Blue Nile) as two separate negotiation tracks. The political and economic crises are to be solved through a broad National Dialogue, initiated by President Omar Al Bashir in 2014.

The Sudanese government insist on the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur, that it signed in Qatar in July 2011 with a coalition of Darfur breakaway rebel groups, as the basis for any peace talks with the holdout Darfur rebel movements.

The third main Darfur rebel movement, the Sudan Liberation Movement of Abdelwahid El Nur (SLM-AW) categorically rejects joining negotiations before the government has disarmed the militiamen in the region and the rule of law has been restored.

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