28 January 2013

Sudan's Opposition Acknowledges Authenticity of Letter to Rebels Leaked By Govt

Khartoum — The chairman of the National Consensus Forces (NCF) Farouk Abu Issa acknowledged on Monday the authenticity of a letter attributed to him that was sent to the head of Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) Malik Agar.

The contents of the message were published by Sudan's official news agency (SUNA) over the weekend.

Abu Issa reportedly informed Agar that the NCF has established a committee to review the "New Dawn" charter signed this month between SRF and several opposition parties before expressing an opinion.

"As with regard to the coordination committee we ask that you wait on us for reasons known to you," Abu Issa was quoted as saying in the letter.

The SRF is a coalition between the armed rebel groups fighting the Sudanese army in Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

In press statements today, Abu Issa said that NCF plans to investigate how the letter fell into the hands of the government but nonetheless downplayed its significance.

"The opposition conducts its activities in public, particularly as it incorporates a coalition of parties and factions....We cannot hide [things] from one another as it jeopardizes unity," the NCF head said.

Abu Issa stressed that there is nothing new or secret about the letter he sent to Agar saying it is no different from previous NCF statements.

He said that they asked the SRF for time "until we are completely united in our programs".

The New Dawn charter came under fierce attack from the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) which said that its signatories want to establish a secular state in Sudan and undermine the country's institutions such as the army.

The unrelenting NCP campaign against the deal may have pushed some of its signatories such as the National Umma Party (NCP), Popular Congress Party (PCP) and Sudan Communist Party (SCP) to distance themselves from the charter.

The NCP spokesperson Badr al-Deen Ahmed Ibrahim said that Abu Issa's letter proves that opposition is in agreement with the charter despite statements to the contrary. He urged opposition parties to state their position on the letter "else there will be a new measure".

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