Juba City good for peace talks, say Sudan leaders

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[Juba, South Sudan, TCT, Francis Mading] The head of the Transitional Sovereign Council of Sudan has expressed confidence in Juba’s ability to host Sudan’s peace talks as the head of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) renewed his call to discuss their reservations and fully implement the Juba Declaration.

[Juba, South Sudan, TCT, Francis Mading] The head of the Transitional Sovereign Council of Sudan has expressed confidence in Juba’s ability to host Sudan’s peace talks as the head of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) renewed his call to discuss their reservations and fully implement the Juba Declaration.

After the fall of the Bashir regime, Juba strongly renewed its initiative for peace in Sudan, pointing to its good relations with the armed movements and proposed to host the talks instead of facilitating the peace process as it had suggested in the past.

However, after the signing of the Juba Declaration on September 11, the SRF complained that there are many prisoners of war still in jail, attacks against civilians continue to occur in Darfur, and the lack of an African Union mandate for the peace process.

The opening session of the peace process held on October 14th was attended by President Salva Kiir, Sudan’s Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia and the Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly.

In his speech, al-Burhan praised President Salva Kiir, who described him as the elder brother for his initiative to achieve peace in Sudan and expressed confidence in Juba as a venue to host the peace process.

Juba "is one of the most qualified capitals to make a real breakthrough in peace for Sudan," said al-Burhan.

He further said that "the change that took place in Sudan after the December Revolution" opened a new horizon of peace with which the negotiations became based on partnership.

"The leaders of the armed struggle are partners in the change that took place in the country," he stressed.

He reiterated his keenness that Juba’s process reaches a settlement that would end the war by addressing the root causes of the conflict.

The leader of the collegial presidency also called for establishing of a regional bloc to deal with peace and security in the region.

The region’s leaders, in their different remarks, welcomed the Government of South Sudan's efforts to bring peace to Sudan and appealed to the parties involved to end the war and work together to achieve the economic recovery of their country and the welfare of the citizens.

The head of the Revolutionary Front reiterated their commitment to reach peace, but called for regional and international participation in the talks. He stressed on "the need for a clear mandate from the African Union to enable the Sudanese parties to enter into a successful political process."

He also underlined the need for "activating the Juba Declaration and implementing all its provisions, including the cessation of hostilities and the unconditional release of all prisoners", in addition to discussing the necessary details related to the peace process.

The South Sudanese mediation team has proposed to begin with the security arrangements and to sign a ceasefire agreement.

The government negotiating team is supposed to start talks with the SRF negotiating team to reach an agreement on their concerns.

Observers noted the presence of all the SRF leaders except Minni Miinawi of the Sudan Liberation Movement who did not attend the event.

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