Special envoys to Sudan from the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and the European Union yesterday called upon all parties to the Darfur conflict to cease hostilities and engage in the ongoing peace process in Doha to put an end to the suffering of the people of Darfur.
In a statement issued after a meeting at the Doha Sheraton, the envoys also called upon the international community and neighbouring countries to support the peace process and to consolidate all the initiatives of mediation and integrate them within the broad framework of the Doha peace process.
Yesterday’s meeting was held to discuss ways to provide new impetus to the peace talks to find a settlement to the issue.
The meeting was chaired by Qatar’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, H E Ahmed bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud, and attended by the special representative of the Chinese government to Darfur, Liu Guijin; the EU special envoy for Sudan, Torben Brylle; the French president’s diplomatic adviser for African affairs, Bruno Jobert; Russia’s special envoy to Sudan, Mikhail Margelov; Britain’s special envoy for Darfur, Michael O’Neill; the US president’s special envoy for Sudan, Major General J Scott Gration; and the United Nations/African Union Joint Chief Mediator for Darfur, Djibril Bassole.
Earlier, Qatar called on both the Sudanese government and the Darfur rebels to make concessions to end the conflict and ensure the flow of humanitarian aid.
Al Mahmoud said both sides should end attacks and make compromises if a lasting peace agreement was to be hammered out, Qatar News Agency reported.
Bassole said the envoys were trying to put together a plan which includes a timetable for reaching a peace deal, the complete cessation of hostilities and the sharing of wealth and land.
“JEM’s precondition for continuing discussions is complete liberation of JEM’s war prisoners held by the government. While the government refused to entertain the release of prisoners unless JEM agrees to cessation of hostilities. The mediation, with the support of the P-5 and EU special representatives, will try to find a compromise and engage the parties to the conflict, who have returned to Doha, to resume negotiations,” said Bassole.
The envoys, in their statement, demanded that aid for reconstruction and development be redirected to support durable peace and reconciliation among the people in Darfur and that the aid reach all sections of society in Darfur.
They welcomed the Doha Accord to normalise ties between Chad and Sudan and expressed concern at the deteriorating security situation along the borders between the two countries and demanded the parties exercise restraint and act without delay to ensure security and stability in the region.
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