Better to fight for justice than self-determination in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains: Umma Party

November 2, 2017 (KHARTOUM) – The National Umma Party (NUP) said it does not support calls for self-determination in the Nuba Mountains and reiterated its neutrality towards the two factions of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N)

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NUP leader Sadiq al-Mahdi speaks to reporters at a press conference in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on 30 November 2014 (ST)

“The National Umma Party renews its clear position on the right of the Nuba Mountains to self-determination and affirms that self-determination is successful when it faces a foreign colonial rule, but in the case of internal injustice and inequality in the context of a national state, the struggle for legitimate rights and demands is the best way to achieve internal peace and justice,” reads a statement extended to Sudan Tribune by the NUP leadership.

Commenting on the call for self-determination by the SPLM-N Nuba Mountains Liberation Council before the extraordinary general conference last October, NUP leader Sadiq al-Mahdi termed as “unfortunate” such a move.

Sudanese opposition forces are not supportive of such claim after the secession of South Sudan. In a recent meeting held in London representatives of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front led by Minni Minnawi, SPLM-N al-Huli and NUP agreed that “the right of self-determination guaranteed by international conventions does not mean secession.

The opposition forces seek to maintain its unity through the framework of the Sudan Call alliance. So, they seek to bring all its components to have a unified position on the right to self-determination raised by the al-Hilu’s group.

The statement further stressed that the Uma party does stand at the same distance from the two SPLM-N factions.

Further, the opposition party pledged to continue to seek to reduce the differences between the two groups in order to “prevent any damage that may be caused by the dispute affecting our citizens in those areas”.

The statement condemned the human rights abuses by the Rapid Support Forces in Darfur, especially after they forcefully shaved the head of a girl in Kutum town in North Darfur as they prepare to launch compulsory arms collection operation in the region.

It further condemned the restriction of freedom of movement pointing to the travel ban imposed last week against a Sudanese journalist working in the Gulf region after holidays in Khartoum with his family.