South Sudan: Sudan Govt - SPLM-N Negotiations Resume in Juba

Juba — Negotiations between Sudan's transitional government and the Sudan People's liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) under the leadership of Abdelaziz El Hilu, resumed today in Juba, capital of South Sudan. The government delegation will deliver its response to the draft framework agreement submitted by the SPLM-N, which was handed over by the mediation at the weekend.

Mediation committee rapporteur Dhieu Mathok announced that the draft framework agreement includes a translation of the Declaration of Principles signed in Juba. Negotiations were adjourned until today to provide an opportunity for the government to study and discuss the draft framework agreement submitted.

Today's sitting is being attended by all parties to the negotiation from the transactional government, the South Sudanese mediation, and a number of experts and international observers.

Background:

El Hilu withdrew from the previous Juba peace talks in August in protest of the chairmanship of the government delegation by Deputy Chairman of the Sovereign Council Lt Gen Mohamed Hamdan 'Hemeti', who is also Commander-in-Chief of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) militia. The rebels accuse the RSF forces of committing "heinous crimes" against civilians in various parts of Sudan.

In November, El Hilu reaffirmed his eagerness "to reach a peaceful, just, and comprehensive political settlement of the Sudanese problem that would put an end to the civil wars in Sudan".

A Declaration of Principles was signed on March 28, in which the two parties agreed "to work together to achieve and consolidate the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of Sudan".

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