Sudan’s FM, Norwegian envoy discuss South Sudan crisis

Sudan FM Ibrahim Ghandour and Norway's Special Envoy to South Sudan and Sudan, Erling Skojonsberg on Thursday 7 September 2017 (ST Photo)

September 7, 2017 (KHARTOUM) – Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour and the visiting Norway’s Special Envoy to South Sudan and Sudan, Erling Skojonsberg Thursday discussed the ongoing regional efforts to end the four-year crisis in South Sudan.

“The meeting dealt with the issues of peace in South Sudan, especially the role of Sudan through the IGAD gate to bring peace to the (neighbouring country), said a statement released by the foreign ministry spokesperson.

With the USA and UK, the Norway is part of the Troika countries that support the regional efforts to bring peace in South Sudan.

Ways to stop hostilities and to recommit the warring parties in South Sudan to the signed ceasefire agreement remain the joint goal of the IGAD and the Troika countries.

Last May, Skojonsberg announced that Oslo would host a meeting for the government and the opposition groups for a reconciliation conference. But for an unknown reason, the meeting was cancelled.

The statement further said the meeting tackled the lift of U.S. sanctions on Sudan and the government efforts to achieve peace in Sudan, including Khartoum’s readiness to resume negotiations with the SPLM-N in line with the Roadmap agreement brokered by the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel.

Last June, Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour discussed the permanent revocation of the economic embargo on Sudan in Oslo with the representative of the Office of the U.S. Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan, Paul Steven and the Norwegian Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan Erling Skojonsberg.

The situation in South Sudan was also among the issues discussed at the tripartite meeting.

Thursday discussed bilateral relations between Oslo and Khartoum as the Norway pledged since long years ago to support Sudanese efforts to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) and to write off its foreign debt.