Sudan Government Optimistic About South Sudan Security Pact

Article Summary
Sudan’s government expressed optimism that they would reach a security understanding with the new government of South Sudan, with which it has been arguing  since the two countries split in 2011. Imad Hassan reports that security incidents continued in Darfur, including the killing of a policeman.

Khartoum has expressed considerable optimism about reaching a final agreement on security issues with [the capital of South Sudan] Juba following the Eid-al-Fitr holiday [marking the end of Ramadan]. The Sudanese government said it intends to include South Kordofan and Blue Nile states in the next round of negotiations. President Omar al-Bashir told the negotiating delegation to not rush to sign an agreement without an official and popular support. A UNAMID [United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur] policeman was killed in Darfur yesterday.

Sudanese Vice President Al-Haji Adam Yusuf said a solution to the security issue is near and would be a key to resolve all differences. He added that negotiations on security issues have reached an advanced stage. However, adopting the South border point, which was approved by the South and the UN in accordance with the border map of Sudan on Jan. 1, 1956, remains a bone of contention.

Yusuf said Sudan considers border security to be the main guarantee that war will not return, adding that there is no reason for any delay regarding security issues. Yusuf stressed the need to resolve this issue before moving to others, including oil, and continued: “if an agreement on oil issue is reached before border and security, its incomes would be used in a war between both parties.

Yusuf strongly denied that the government is negotiating with Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-North), and stressed that the government agreed on negotiating with Al-Maslaha residents who agreed on the trilateral initiative of aid delivery to the Blue Nile and South Kordofan states. This initiative is approved by Khartoum, the UN, the African Union and the Arab League.

He explained that the government agreed that the three parties evaluate the situation in both states and that after identifying humanitarian needs, aid would be provided to affected civilians in areas outside of the Sudanese government’s control and under its leadership and supervision. Yusuf said: “We do not have a problem if the rebels want to cooperate, but they need to understand that they do not have the last say regarding this issue.”

Yusuf assured that the state is willing to amend the media law to serve the interests of the state and journalists. This law would guarantee both parties’ rights and obligations for the country's good. He pledged to allow journalists to get the correct information and visit all areas that they wish to visit.

Moreover, the government has announced its intention to include all components of South Kordofan and Blue Nile states in the next round of negotiations, and to widen consultations with all tribes of border areas with the South.

Abdul Rahim Mohamed Hussein, Sudan’s defense minister who was addressing political and parliamentary members of South Kordofan, Southern Darfur and Blue Nile states, said the country is keen on expending participation in future negotiations on border issue, to bring the necessary support for negotiating delegation. He revealed that the president told the delegation to not rush to sign an agreement without a popular and official support. According to the minister, Bashir said: “Do not rush to sign and take the needed time in the negotiations.” The minister stressed that the government would not compromise on border issue with the South by leaving out an inch of the land.

In Darfur, a Bangladeshi policeman in the UNAMID was killed yesterday, and another wounded while performing their duties in protecting civilians in the Otash displaced persons camp in Nyala, South Darfur. Moreover, a lawyer of the Sudanese and US resident, Radwan Yaakoub Daoud, said the Sudanese court ordered the release of his client and dropped charges against him yesterday. Daoud was accused of organizing demonstrations in the light of the protests that broke out in Sudan last month.

Found in: united nations, sudan, peace, omar, darfur

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