17 May 2013

Sudan: Kiir Promises to Investigate Khartoum's Claims of Support to Sudanese Rebels

Khartoum — South Sudan's president, Salva Kiir Mayardit, has promised to verify the information given to him by the Sudanese foreign minister, Ali Karti, on claims of continued support offered by several bodies within his government to Sudanese rebel groups in Darfur and Kordofan states.

Last week, Sudan's national intelligence and security services (NISS) accused the South Sudanese government of continuing to support the rebel groups in spite of the normalisation process launched last March.

On Wednesday, Sudanese first vice-president Ali Osman Taha said that some circles within the Juba government support rebel groups. He added that they want to implement the strategy of the "New Sudan" irrespective of whether the governing party in Khartoum is the National Congress Party (NCP) or another party.

Sudan's foreign minister who visited Juba on Friday accompanied by NISS director, Mohamed Atta, delivered a letter from the Sudanese president to his southern counterpart containing information and documents proving logistical and military support received by rebel groups across the border.

According to the Sudanese official news agency (SUNA), president Kiir has promised to consider and verify the information and stressed that his country had no desire to harm Sudan's interests, reiterating commitment to security agreements signed between the two countries.

In September of last year, the two ex-foes signed a series of cooperation agreements which covered oil, citizenship rights, security issues, banking, and border trade among others.

After several months of an apparent setback, the two countries signed an implementation matrix last March for these cooperation agreements.

President Kiir further said that he would discuss the issue with president Omer Al-Bashir on the sidelines of the African Union (AU) summit which will be held in Addis Ababa late this month.

Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) rebels recently attacked several areas in South and North Kordofan. They said these attacks are part of their war of attrition against the regime before to assault the capital Khartoum.

Yasir Arman, Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-North) secretary general called on the opposition parties to agree with the SRF on a national program for the post-Bashir era asserting that popular uprising will accelerate the collapse of the regime.

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