Sudan says wouldn’t accept “new agenda” in Two Areas talks

August 27, 2017 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s negotiating team has welcomed the African mediation move to meet with Abdel-Aziz al-Hilu, leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/North (SPLMN-al-Hilu) to resume peace talks on the Two Areas.

JPEG - 15.2 kb
Abel Aziz al-Hilu (Reuters file photo)

The SPLM-N is now divided into two factions: one in the Nuba Mountains led by al-Hilu and the other in the White Nile State led by Malik Agar. The rift emerged several months ago over the right of self-determination and other issues.

The head of the African Union office in Khartoum Mahmoud Kan said on Wednesday that an expert-level meeting with the SPLM-N al-Hilu will be held in Addis Ababa on 28 August.

The semi-official Sudan Media Center (SMC) Sunday quoted the member of the government negotiating team Abdel-Rahman Abu Median as saying the African mediation must state clearly to al-Hilu the negotiations references and agenda.

He stressed the government wouldn’t allow the Movement to add any new agenda, saying the two sides must adhere to what has been agreed upon in the previous rounds.

Abu Median was alluding to al-Hilu’s demand for the self-determination for South Kordofan and Blue Nile states.

On Saturday, the member of the government team Bushara Guma’a Aror said the new reality indicates that the peace talks would be held with al-Hilu, not Agar.

The Sudanese army has been fighting the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/North (SPLM-N) rebels in the Blue Nile and South Kordofan, also known as the Two Areas since 2011.