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Sudan: Opposition leaders return to Khartoum after government peace deal

November 16, 2020 at 2:59 pm

A demonstrator holds up a sign reading in Arabic “peace first, Nertiti sit-in” along with a drawn Sudanese flag, during a protest outside the Sudanese Professionals Association in the Garden City district of Sudan’s capital Khartoum on 4 July 2020 [ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP via Getty Images]

Leaders of the Sudanese opposition groups have arrived in the capital Khartoum amid national celebrations following the signing of the peace agreement with the country’s transitional government, Associated Press reported yesterday.

The arrivals, who were welcomed by the head of the country’s sovereign council, included leaders of the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) – a coalition of several armed groups centered in Sudan’s western region of Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

On 3 October, SRF signed a peace agreement with the Sudanese sovereign council in the South Sudan capital city of Juba, which aimed at ending the country’s decades-long civil wars.

This agreement was reported to have not included all the opposition armed movements, most prominently the Sudan Liberation Movement-Army headed by Abdel-Wahid Nour, who rejects the transitional government. But was said to be preparing for a comprehensive peace initiative with the Sudanese government in Uganda.

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Moreover, the Sudan Liberation Movement-North – Sudan’s largest opposition group – led by Abdel Aziz Al-Hilu, was involved in the Juba talks but is yet to reach a deal with the government.

Under the terms of the agreement, the armed movements are entitled to three seats in the sovereignty council, five others ministerial positions and 25 per cent of the seats at the legislative council.

Sudan’s sovereign government has been struggling to revive the country’s economy, which has plunged under the decades-long US sanctions, as well as years of government corruption.

The African country is also listed on America’s state sponsors of terrorism blacklist, hindering its ability to attain global funding.