21 January 2013

Sudan: Khartoum Accuses Juba of Foiling Bilateral Negotiations

Photo: http://www.rnw.nl
Civilians are bearing the brunt of conflict (file photo).

The Sudanese government has accused South Sudan of foiling their most recent round of negotiations, citing that Juba did not care to implement their agreements.

Following the talks with South Sudanese delegation in Ethiopia's capital of Addis Ababa on Saturday, Sudanese delegation said in a statement that Juba was not "serious" to make practical steps or implement what had been agreed on by two presidents during their recent summit.

On Jan. 7, Sudan and South Sudan resumed negotiations focusing on three issues, including the implementation of the transitional arrangements on Abyei, security arrangements on the demilitarised zone and preparation of a comprehensive matrix with specific timeframes for the agreements signed by the two countries in Addis Ababa on Sept. 27, 2012.

Sudanese delegation explained that the talks on Abyei stalled with South Sudan's insistence that the make-up of the legislative council of Abyei should be 12 Southern Sudanese members against 10 members for Sudan, while Sudan insist on equal representation.

Sudan further accused South Sudan of backtracking from its commitments regarding security arrangements and withdrawal of its troops from the disputed areas.

It added that South Sudanese delegation has also rejected the formation of the monitoring mechanisms concerned with breaking the link between its army and the rebels at Blue Nile and South Kordofan areas, cessation of hostilities, and stoppage of support or shelter for the armed rebel movements.

South Sudanese delegation has even gone further in its obstinacy by rejecting to sign what the two sides have agreed on regarding the points of difference, it said.

On Jan. 5, Sudan and South agreed to implement the item of security arrangements, form civil institutions for the Abyei area and work out a matrix with specific timeframes to implement the agreement.

On Sept. 27, 2012, Sudan and South Sudan signed a package of agreements on various issues during a presidential summit in Ethiopia's capital of Addis Ababa.

Witnessed by members of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel on Sudan (AUHIP), the two sides inked three deals on cooperation, security and post-secession matters. However, the signed agreements did not tackle the issues of Abyei and border demarcation.

A referendum was scheduled to be held in Abyei to decide the fate of the area coincident with the referendum on self- determination for South Sudan in January 2011 which resulted in the separation between the north and the south, but the voting did not take place due to differences over who has the right to vote.


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