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Joint Commission pledges continued commitment to Doha Document

By United Nations - African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID)
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KHARTOUM, Sudan, February 25, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- A continued commitment to the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD), particularly the Final Security Arrangements, was the focus of the Third Meeting of the DDPD Joint Commission, which was held today in Khartoum.

The Commission, one of two ceasefire monitoring and operational mechanisms provided for in the DDPD, is chaired by Mohamed Ibn Chambas, the Joint Special Representative (JSR) of the African Union-United Mission in Darfur (UNAMID). Membership in the body includes the three parties to the Doha Document—the Government of Sudan, the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) and the Justice and Equality Movement – Sudan (JEM-Sudan). It is also comprised of representatives of the State of Qatar, the League of Arab States and the European Union, as well as observers from Canada, China and Norway.

In his opening address, JSR Chambas welcomed positive developments which had taken place over the previous year, including the joining of JEM-Sudan to the DDPD and the signing of an agreement between the Government of Sudan and LJM on the implementation of the final security arrangements.

The JSR noted that that the Mission's task was to support the signatories. “UNAMID stands prepared to assist the parties in the line with the provisions of the DDPD. We are also ready to play an advocacy role to mobilize support for the processes that follow,” he said.

The meeting considered a report on the status of the implementation of the Permanent Ceasefire and Final Security Arrangements from UNAMID's Force Commander, Lieutenant-General Paul Ignace Mella, who chairs the Ceasefire Commission (CFC). Most notably, the report included a formal communication from the Government of Sudan and LJM to the Chairperson of the Joint Commission confirming their decision to skip phases of the Final Security Arrangements; the number of LJM combatants for integration into the country's police and armed forces; the number of LJM combatants to undergo disarmament, demobilization and reintegration; funding availability for reintegration of ex-combatants; and, implementation of modalities for limited arms control.

It also discussed a report by JEM-Sudan on the progress on security arrangements with the Government of Sudan and urged the parties to work closely with the Ceasefire Commission on verification of movement's military dispositions. As a way forward, the Commission decided that the Government of Sudan and JEM-Sudan should commence a verification exercise.

The Commission concluded by recognizing the crucial role the international community can play in achieving durable peace in Darfur and encouraged those partners to provide continued support to the implementation of the DDPD.