Darfur: UN-AU mediator welcomes rebels’ commitment to peace process
The African Union-United Nations chief mediator for Darfur today welcomed a joint statement by the main the armed movements in the western Sudanese region in which they, for the first time, expressed their commitment to the internally-facilitated peace talks hosted by the Government of Qatar.
Djibril Bassolé described the statement as an unprecedented agreement by the movements to stand together on issues related to the conflict in Darfur.
This breakthrough gives all of those who have been committed to Darfur in recent years a new reason to hope that a just and sustainable peace can be reached, said Mr. Bassolé in a statement.
The leaders of Darfur clearly realize that now is the time to come together, to leave behind the long history of struggle and conflict, and from the depths of suffering, to realize the aspirations of a people for the just and equitable peace they deserve, Mr. Bassolé said.
To reach a true peace in Darfur, it is essential that all the belligerents enter immediately into negotiations and cease hostilities. This is a political and humanitarian imperative, and todays joint statement is a major step towards a shared commitment to a negotiated resolution, he added.
He urged the Government of Sudan to respond positively and engage those committed to the Doha Peace Process in the final round of talks to deliver a comprehensive and inclusive peace agreement for the people of Darfur.
I call on the Justice and Equality Movement and the Liberation and Justice Movement to build on this bold step, by working together on a common platform, to build on the progress of the peace process so far, and to deliver on the demands of the people of Darfur, said Mr. Bassolé.
He said the joint statement showed that leaders in Darfur strongly agree that peace can only be achieved through an internationally mediated peace process.
Only a solution that includes the full commitment of the Government of Sudan, the Armed Movements, and the People of Darfur can deliver a just a sustainable peace.
Anything short of this will only deliver prolonged suffering, conflict, and injustice. This is the most promising moment in years for serious peace, but this opportunity will fade unless we all choose to make it the start of the end of this conflict and the beginning of a new era for the people of Darfur and all Sudan, said Mr. Bassolé.