Crisis in Sudan: AU mechanism convenes new talks

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The AU-established coordinating mechanism – the Expanded Mechanism and its Core Group for the Resolution of the Crisis in Sudan, has reportedly begun to send invitations and reserved the agenda for the start of a comprehensive dialogue process for the Sudanese political forces to be held in Addis Ababa between July 10 and 15, Ashraf Abdelaziz reports for Radio Dabanga.

The coordinating mechanism is acting on the decisions of the African Peace and Security Council meeting on Kampala, Uganda, onJune 21, which commended the efforts of the mechanism and urged it to continue with the arrangements for the start of a comprehensive dialogue process for the Sudanese political forces.

Sources told Radio Banga that the African Union also invited people and groups “related to the former regime of Omar Al Bashir and supporting the war” to attend the comprehensive dialogue that will be held in Addis Ababa between July 10 and 15, in addition to “others that back the war and are biased towards the army”.

Apology

Ahmed Tugud Lisan, a leading member of the Civil Democratic Forces alliance (Taqadom) told Radio Dabanga yesterday that they received an invitation from the African High-Level Mechanism to participate in the preparatory meeting that will be held in Addis Ababa from 10 to 15 July.

“The fundamental question concerning our participation was about the nature of the other parties invited to the conference [..] because the outcome of this preliminary meeting will be the basis for the entire political process. [..] In short, this meeting is important in terms of attendance, and important in terms of formulating the draft of the future peace process,” Lisan said.

“Following communication with the African High-Level Mechanism during the past two days, we did not reach clear answers about the nature of the participating parties, and about the details related to this meeting,” he continued. “Therefore, the Tagadom alliance expressed its desire to communicate with the African Union to prepare a complete vision about the political process, but at the same time it apologised for participating in this meeting.

“First: The parties participating in these meetings are in the form of blocs, and most of these blocs are artificial. Also, these blocs want to participate with a very large number of individuals, while the role of some of the main parties, such as Tagadom, was dwarfed.”

He added that the Civil Democratic Forces alliance sees the need to wait and conduct an additional dialogue with the African mechanism and to stand on all the arrangements required to hold the meeting. “Tagadom, up to this moment, is in its firm position that it will not participate in the July 10 meetings unless the mechanism amends the method of arrangement and the method of participation of the parties and the identification of the parties in a manner that expresses the political reality in Sudan.

“Until then, the Coordination will remain in contact with the African mechanism, but it will not participate in this specific meeting.”

Request for postponement

The Eastern Sudan Civil Forces Alliance also reacted to the invitation yesterday and requested the meeting to be postponed.

Spokesperson Salih Amar said: “We welcome the African Union’s peace initiative in Sudan, which was agreed upon in broad terms at the recent meeting of the African Peace and Security Council with the presence of African heads of state and governments on June 21.

“The initiative aims to stop the war in Sudan and establish a transitional civilian authority that will lead the country to peace and democracy. The initiative is designed on two tracks: the first is to bring together the warring parties, and the second is the political process with the participation of civil forces.

“According to the information we have, representatives of the African Presidents Committee will hold meetings with the leaders of the armed forces and the Rapid Support Forces in the coming short period in Port Sudan and other locations in preparation for a meeting between Abdelfattah El Burhan and Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo ‘Hemeti’. An invitation has been extended to civil forces to attend a preparatory meeting on July 10, 2024, in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

“While we welcome this positive effort that the Sudanese people are following with interest and commend the supportive steps, including the recent Cairo meeting, we appeal to the African Union to postpone the meeting scheduled for the day after tomorrow, Wednesday, to allow for more consultation and ensure the presence of all active civil forces and armed political movements that have put forward points and ideas worthy of discussion and deliberation.”

Saudi Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs arrives in Port Sudan

The official Sudan News Agency (SUNA) reports that Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, chairperson of the Sovereignty Council and commander-in-chief of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) yesterday met with Saudi Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin Abdulkarim El Khereiji who arrived in Port Sudan on an official visit.

Ambassador Hussein Awad, undersecretary of the Sudanese FA Ministry said in a press statement yesterday that the talks concerned Saudi Arabia’s call to resume the Jeddah negotiations platform, adding that El Burhan stressed Sudan’s keenness to make the Jeddah talks a success as a foundation to build on, stressing the need to implement what was agreed upon in May 2023.

The meeting also addressed the importance of expanding the base of facilitators in the Jeddah negotiations, indicating that the chair of the Sovereignty Council expressed his reservations about the presence of any party supporting the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

El Burhan expressed his thanks and appreciation for the positions of Saudi Arabia in support of the security and stability of Sudan, referring to the fraternal relations between the two brotherly peoples.

The Saudi vice-minister conveyed the greetings of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz, and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

He said that the stability of Sudan has a direct impact on the security and stability of the region, referring to the huge resources that Sudan has in various fields.

The meeting was also attended by the director of the General Intelligence Service (GIS), Gen Ahmed El Mufaddal.

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Source: dabangasudan