‘Tough negotiations ahead for Sudan’: Jibril Ibrahim
The leadership of Sudan’s Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), Dr Jibril Ibrahim, has predicted that all parties face ‘tough negotiations’ once the remaining opposition forces have signed the AUHIP roadmap in Addis Ababa next week.
Speaking to Radio Dabanga on Wednesday, Ibrahim said that the roadmap will be signed during the first half of next week, at meetings between the Sudan Appeal forces and the African Union mediation team (AUHIP) under the leadership of former South African President Thabo Mbeki in the Ethiopian capital.
He said that next week’s meetings will focus on cessation of hostilities, delivery of humanitarian relief, and creating an atmosphere conducive to negotiation.
“Then, the most difficult negotiations will occur at a subsequent preparatory meeting about our particpation in the National Dialogue, that date of which must still be set.”
The Sudanese government has also confirmed that its delegation “will participate in a meeting with a group of the Sudanese opposition parties on 9 and 10 August in Addis Ababa at by invitation of AUHIP”.
In remarks to reporters, Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid, the Assistant to President Omar Al Bashir, predicted that the opposition parties will accept the roadmap, which will later result in a ceasefire and humanitarian aid to the citizens.
Hamid said that once the rest of the parties have signed the roadmap, “meetings will be held to negotiate the cessation of hostilities, declaration of a comprehensive ceasefire, the delivery of humanitarian aid, and the completion of the Framework Agreement in accordance with the proposal that has been discussed since 2011 and agreed upon by nearly 90 per cent”.
The AUHIP roadmap is the result of a meeting held in Addis in March this year. The agreement, prepared by the AU chief mediator, Thabo Mbeki, is designed to end the armed conflicts in Darfur, Blue Nile, and South Kordofan, and move towards the participation of the opposition groups allied under the Sudan Appeal in the National Dialogue.
The government delegation and the chief mediator signed the document in March, but the opposition have thus far refused, insisting that several issues including security and ending the conflict in the region.
Progress was made to bring the parties closer together during meetings in Paris last month.
International leaders including UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, The ‘Troika’ of Norway, the United Kingdom and the USA, and AU Commission Chairwoman Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma have called on the opposition to sign the roadmap to hasten the resolution of the conflict that has ravaged the country for years.
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