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‘US and UN undermine leadership SLM Abdel Wahid’

August 12 - 2009 TRIPOLI



‘The US-envoy Scott Gration and the UN-peace negotiator Djibril Bassolé try to create a new leadership of the Sudan Liberation Movement of Abdel Wahid”. That says Nimr Mohamed Abdelrahman, the army spokesman of SLM-Abdel Wahid, to Radio Dabanga. Abdel Wahid al Nur is leader of the largest faction of the Sudan Liberation Movement.

His spokesman says that the policy of US and UN is based on the pretext that Abdel Wahid al Nur is not serious anymore about reaching peace in Darfur. A new leadership would be more willing to take part in peace negotiations. Nimr Mohamed Abdelrahman told Radio Dabanga that the accusations concerning Abdel Wahid’s lack of willingness to achieve peace ‘are not true’. ‘It is the opposite; we are affirming that the movement is very willing in reaching peace’. According to the spokesman, Abdel Wahid will not go to Addis Ababa – contrary to earlier reports – on the 18th of August at the invitation of the US Envoy for Sudan Scott Gration. Abdel Wahid al Nur almost signed the Darfur Peace Agreement in Abuja, but at the very last moment he refused his signature. Since then he operates from Paris and rejects all peace negotiations. He states that the government should first disarm the Arab militias, stop the settlement of foreigners and guarantee security in Darfur.

Ten smaller rebel factions signed in Tripoli an agreement to join the Doha peace talks after the end of Ramadan in September. Amongst the signing factions are SLM-Unity, SLM-Abdallah Yahya, SLM-Juba Unity, Harba, SLM-Mainstream, SLM-Khamis Abdallah, JEM-Field Command, Ali Moukhtar, JEM-Idriss Azraq, and the United Revolutionary Redemption Front (URF of Abu Garda). None of these groups represent a large portion of the Fur tribe, like the factions of SLM-Abdel Wahid and SLM-Abdel Shafi. Also the JEM-Khalil Ibrahim did not sign the agreement, but was present during the negotiations in Tripoli. Osman Al Bushra, the political secretary of SLM-Unity told Radio Dabanga that the meeting will acknowledge the participation of all armed movements in the coming Doha negotiations.

At the same time Ahmed Ibrahim Dereig, a civil engineer and former governor of Darfur and chairman of the Federal Alliance condemned the Tripoli organizers for having only invited the armed movements instead of representation from civil society and people who refuse to pick up guns. Dereig told Radio Dabanga that anybody who has an opinion on the issue of Darfur should have been invited. He further said that there are politicians who took up guns before but who now are looking for other solutions from those with ideas most needed to resolve the Darfur issue.

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