African Union

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SPLA accuses northern army of border attack

By Bonifacio Taban Kuich

August 6, 2013 (BENTIU) – A South Sudan army (SPLA) official has accused northern forces of allegedly shooting its patrol soldiers at disputed border area between the two countries.

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The clash, according to Unity state’s fourth division commander, occurred after his forces witnessed their northern counterparts allegedly digging up more oil wells in Tachuin, a disputed area on Monday.

“The incident occurred when a group of SPLA soldiers accessed the buffer zone areas, which were used by Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) to drill fresh oil wells, resulting into unilateral fire exchange between the two armies,” James Koang Chuol told Sudan Tribune Tuesday.

He accused the northern army of violation provisions of the the security agreements reached between both countries.

“We have for quite a long time been peaceful at the border, it was only yesterday when the incident occurred, but [the] situation is normal,” he said.

“We cannot attack SAF with only six soldiers while patrolling,” he added.

The army official, however, stressed that the confrontation between the two armies was “accidental” and not “intentional”, but blamed SAF for what occurred.

The incident came a day after a joint border verification monitoring team from the African Union and the SPLA visited Unity state to brief the governor on a proposed map demanding that both side withdraw their troops at least 10-km from the buffer zone.

The proposal, according to Chuol, will help reduce more tension at the border between the two countries.

“What we are trying do is to have peaceful coexistent between the two army forces to withdraw and create a buffer zone at the border, so that we have peace along our borders,” he said.

DIFFERENT LOCATION

Al-Sawarmi Khaled, the spokesperson for SAF said limited clashes occurred with the SPLA in Heglig near the border between the two countries on Monday.

The incident, he told SUNA, took place when the SPLA patrol got few kilometres inside the Sudanese area of Heglig, an oil producing area not far from the border between South Kordofan and Unity state.

He added that a Sudanese soldier was killed and two others injured while the SPLA patrol pulled back to South Sudan.

In April 2012, the South Sudanese army seized the oil producing area during 10 days before to withdraw its troops under international pressure preventing a return to all-out war between the two sides.

Heglig or Panthou, which is located at 23 km from Unity state, is claimed by the South Sudan but the African Union mediation refused to include it in the disputed areas.

The two countries reconfirmed recently their commitment to deploy joint patrols to monitor the border and to establish a demilitarized zone on the disputed areas.

They also vowed to stop supporting rebel groups from both sides and to open 10 crossing points on the border to facilitate the movement of people and goods between the two sides.

(ST)

Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article47569

SPLM-N, Ethiopian PM discuss peace in S. Kordofan and Blue Nile

July 2, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – The leadership of the rebel Sudan People’s LIberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) met on Friday with Ethiopian prime minister and current chair of the IGAD executive council, Hailemariam Desalegn, to discuss to discuss a peaceful settlement to the armed conflict in Sudan’s South Kordofan and Blue Nile states, as well as other parts of the country.

JPEG - 43.5 kbEthiopia’s prime minister, Hailemariam Desalegn (File photo/Reuters)

The rebel delegation which arrived earlier this week in Addis Ababa held a series of meetings with the African Union mediation, Ethiopian foreign minister, UN special envoy to Sudan and South Sudan, EU special envoy and Canadian ambassador in Ethiopia.

The consultation meetings focused on the humanitarian situation, and African Union and UN Security Council resolutions providing to hold talks between the rebel group and Sudanese government based on a framework agreement signed in Addis Ababa on 28 June 2011, but denounced by president Omer Al-Bashir.

Following the meeting with the Ethiopian prime minister, SPLM-N secretary general Yasir Arman in a statement he extended to Sudan Tribune said they are ready to negotiate with Khartoum on the basis of Addis Ababa Framework which “has put a solid foundation for an inclusive national constitutional process”.

“The SPLM-N’s belief and conviction is that the piecemeal solution is hurting the future of Sudan and it is not delivering peace”, he further said, stressing that a “durable solution can use all the present forums with the aim of reaching a comprehensive peaceful settlement”.

Sudanese rebel groups gathered under the umbrella of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) call for a comprehensive process to discuss conflicts in Blue Nile, Darfur and South Kordofan in one forum. They also demands to include the opposition parties in order to reach an agreement on a future democratic constitution.

Last July the AU Peace and Security Council (PSC) expressed its support to the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) and urged Darfur rebel groups to engage talks with the government without conditions on the basis of this framework text.

The UN Security Council (UNSC) followed the regional body and adopted a similar position, closing the door on such demand for a comprehensive negotiations.

The rebels believe that the holistic approach should lead to dismantle the rule of the National Congress Party and paves the way for a secular and democratic regime.

However, the AUPSC and UNSC opted for a gradual approach that commences with the resolution of regional conflicts and terminates with the national issue.

In its meeting of 19 July, the African Union admitted that “Darfur crisis is a manifestation of broader political and social problems facing Sudan as a whole” and demanded Sudanese government to pursue a holistic approach to “addressing these challenges within the framework of the on-going constitutional review process”.

The AU High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) led by president Mbeki is supposed to accompany this constitutional process and ensure the inclusion of the opposition forces and what would be former rebels after the signing of peace agreements.

However the Sudanese government refuses the framework agreement signed by the deputy NCP chairman and SPLM-N chairman Malik Agar. The deal provides to establish a partnership between the two political forces in order to achieve democratic transition in Sudan.

This week the head of the Sudanese government negotiating team, Ibrahim Gandour reiterated this week the position of his government refusing to hold talks with the SPLM-N unless they disengage with the their former comrades of the ruling SPLM in Juba.

MEETING WITH AIM

The SPLM-Sudan delegation met also with the Ad Hoc Investigative Mechanism (AIM) which is established by the African Union to probe accusations traded by Khartoum and Juba over support to rebel groups.

Yasir Arman said they had “an in-depth discussion” with the members of the mechanism and invited them to visit the SPLM-Sudan held areas in the Blue Nile and South Kordofan. He emphasized that the territory they control “is bigger in size than some countries represented in the United Nations”.

On the humanitarian register, the SPLM-N secretary-general reaffirmed that they are willing to sign a humanitarian cessation of hostility in order to allow aid groups to reach the needy civilians in the rebel areas.

He also repeated their rejection to the participation of the Sudanese government in a polio vaccination campaign in the SPLM-N-controlled areas. He said the vaccine can be brought directly from Ethiopia and Kenya and proposed to involve UNISFA in the operation to provide the logistics to the agreed site.

(ST)

Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article47526

SPLM-Sudan, Ethiopian PM discusses peace in S. Kordofan and Blue Nile

July 2, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – The leadership of SPLM- Sudan met Friday with Ethiopian prime minister and current chair of IGAD executive council, Hailemariam Desalegn, to discuss to discuss peaceful settlement to end the armed conflict in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states and other parts of the country.

JPEG - 43.5 kbEthiopia’s prime minister, Hailemariam Desalegn (File photo/Reuters)

The rebel delegation which arrived earlier this week in Addis Ababa held a series of meetings with the African Union mediation, Ethiopian foreign minister, UN special envoy to Sudan and South Sudan, EU special envoy and Canadian ambassador in Ethiopia.

The consultation meetings focused on the humanitarian situation, and African Union and UN Security Council resolutions providing to hold talks between the rebel group and Sudanese government based on a framework agreement signed in Addis Ababa on 28 June 2011, but denounced by president Omer Al-Bashir.

Following the meeting with the Ethiopian prime minister, SPLM-Sudan secretary general Yasir Arman in a statement he extended to Sudan Tribune said they are ready to negotiate with Khartoum on the basis of Addis Ababa Framework which “has put a solid foundation for an inclusive national constitutional process”.

“The SPLM-Sudan’s belief and conviction is that the piecemeal solution is hurting the future of Sudan and it is not delivering peace”, he further said, stressing that a “durable solution can use all the present forums with the aim of reaching a comprehensive peaceful settlement”.

Sudanese rebel groups gathered under the umbrella of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) call for a comprehensive process to discuss conflicts in Blue Nile, Darfur and South Kordofan in one forum. They also demands to include the opposition parties in order to reach an agreement on a future democratic constitution.

Last July the AU Peace and Security Council (PSC) expressed its support to the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) and urged Darfur rebel groups to engage talks with the government without conditions on the basis of this framework text.

The UN Security Council (UNSC) followed the regional body and adopted a similar position, closing the door on such demand for a comprehensive negotiations.

The rebels believe that the holistic approach should lead to dismantle the rule of the National Congress Party and paves the way for a secular and democratic regime.

However, yhe PSC and UNSC opted for a gradual approach that commences with the resolution of regional conflicts and terminates with the national issue.

In its meeting of 19 July, the African Union admitted that “Darfur crisis is a manifestation of broader political and social problems facing Sudan as a whole” and demanded Sudanese government to pursue a holistic approach to “addressing these challenges within the framework of the on-going constitutional review process”.

The AU High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) led by president Mbeki is supposed to accompany this constitutional process and ensure the inclusion of the opposition forces and what would be former rebels after the signing of peace agreements.

However the Sudanese government refuses the framework agreement signed by the deputy NCP chairman and SPLM-Sudan chairman Malik Agar. The deal provides to establish a partnership between the two political forces in order to achieve democratic transition in Sudan.

This week the head of the Sudanese government negotiating team, Ibrahim Gandour reiterated this week the position of his government refusing to hold talks with the SPLM-Sudan unless they disengage with the their former comrades of the ruling SPLM in Juba.

MEETING WITH AIM

The SPLM-Sudan delegation met also with the Ad Hoc Investigative Mechanism (AIM) which is established by the African Union to probe accusations traded by Khartoum and Juba over support to rebel groups.

Yasir Arman said they had “an in-depth discussion” with the members of the mechanism and invited them to visit the SPLM-Sudan held areas in the Blue Nile and South Kordofan. He emphasized that the territory they control “is bigger in size than some countries represented in the United Nations”.

On the humanitarian register, the SPLM-Sudan secretary general reaffirmed that they are willing to sign a humanitarian cessation of hostility in order to allow aid groups to reach the needy civilians in the rebel areas.

He also repeated their rejection to the participation of the Sudanese government in a polio vaccination campaign in the SPLM-Sudan controlled areas. He said the vaccine can be brought directly from Ethiopia and Kenya and proposed to involve UNISFA in the operation to provide the logistics to the agreed site.

(ST)

Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article47526

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