Sudan: Govt. Darfuri rebel movements begin peace talks

Khartoum, Sudan (PANA) - Peace talks between the Sudanese government and Darfuri rebel movements, which did not sign the Doha peace agreement, began Sunday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The official Sudan news agency reported on Monday that the talks, featuring government representatives on the one hand and the Darfuri Justice and Equality movement (JEM) and the Sudan liberation army movement (SLA-M) of Meni Arko Minawi, the two most active rebel movements in Darfur, is aimed at reaching a cessation of hostilities to be followed immediately by a ceasefire and capped with a political framework.

Amin Hassan Omar is heading the government delegation while JEM delegation is led by Dr. Jibril Ibrahim and the SLA is led by Mini Arko Minawi.

The talks are being supervised by the African Union High-level Implementation Panel (AUHIP), led by former South African President Thabo Mbeki.

The African Union-United Nations Acting Joint Special Representative and Joint Chief Mediator for Darfur, Abiodun Bashua, participated in the opening session of the talks.

The opening session, which was chaired by Mbeki, was attended by representatives of the African Union (AU), Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the Sudanese Government, Sudan Liberation Army/Minni Minawi and Justice and Equality Movement/Gibril.

In a press release, received by PANA here, the African Union – United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) stated that having thanked the Government of Ethiopia and the AU for sponsoring the negotiations, President Mbeki welcomed the start of discussions between the Government and the movements aimed at ending the conflict in Darfur.

He also indicated that the national dialogue initiative, announced by President Omar Al-Bashir of Sudan earlier this year, "provides the opportunity for a comprehensive and inclusive process to address all the challenges facing by Sudan".

According to the press statement, "Cognizant of the challenges ahead, both the Government of Sudan and the movements reiterated their principal positions and their commitment for a negotiated end to the Darfur conflict through dialogue and peaceful means".

Mbeki wished the parties success in the negotiations and encouraged them to overcome challenges and differences to create a conducive environment for peace.
-0- PANA MO/VAO 23Nov2014

24 november 2014 12:30:09

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