The PSC of the AU, at its 423rd meeting held on 10 March 2014, adopted a decision on the situation in Sudan
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, March 12, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 423rd meeting held on 10 March 2014, adopted the following decision on the situation in Sudan:
1. Takes note of the briefing made by the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) and the statement made by the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Sudan. Council also takes note of the statements made by Rwanda, France, the United Kingdom and the United States of America in their capacity as members of United Nations (UN) Security Council, as well as by the Representatives of the UN and the European Union;
2. Recalls its earlier communiqués and press statements requesting the Sudanese Parties to the conflict in the “Two Areas” of Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan states in the Republic of Sudan, namely the Government of Sudan (GoS) and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLMN) to seek a peaceful resolution of the conflict between them, under the facilitation of the AUHIP and the Chairperson of the Inter-Governmental Authority for Development (IGAD);
3. Further recalls the UN Security Council resolution 2046 (2012), which endorsed the Roadmap adopted by Council on 24 April 2012, and commends the UN, in particular its Special Envoy, Haile Menkerios, as well as other bilateral and multilateral partners, for their continued support to the AU-led efforts;
4. Reiterates its continuing concern with the acute humanitarian crisis in the Two Areas, which is causing loss of life among innocent civilians, and renews its call upon the Parties to facilitate immediate provision of unhindered humanitarian assistance to the war-affected civilian population, in accordance with the spirit of the Tripartite Agreement, as proposed by the AUHIP, and in the context of a cessation of hostilities;
5. Reiterates its firm conviction that there can be no military solution to the conflict in the Two Areas, and that there is no alternative to the Parties than engaging in direct negotiations towards a comprehensive political settlement;
6. Re-emphasizes the urgency of stopping the war and giving a chance to dialogue to resolve the deep-rooted problems of Sudan; recognizes that an end to armed conflict is the overwhelming demand of the people of Sudan and to this end, welcomes the Draft Agreement of 18 February 2014, as proposed by the AUHIP, which it considers as an appropriate framework to serve as a basis for negotiating a peaceful resolution of the conflict in the Two Areas;
7. Notes the Government of Sudan's response to the AUHIP's proposed Draft Framework Agreement of 18 February 2014 and encourages the SPLM-N to respond in accordance with the request made by the AUHIP. Council further encourages the two Parties to continue the bilateral consultations they have initiated to reach a better understanding and solution. In this regard, Council requests the AUHIP to continue to assist the Parties to reach an agreement by 30 April 2014;
8. Further notes the yearning of the people of Sudan to overcome their past predicament and history of conflict, and to move forward to a new and more peaceful and democratic stage of their country's development;
9. Reaffirms the mandate given to the AUHIP by the AU PSC at its 207th meeting on 29 October 2009, inter alia “to assist in the implementation of all aspects of the AUPD [African Union High-Level Panel on Darfur] recommendations, as well as to assist the Sudanese parties in the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and other related processes, as part of the democratic transformation of the Sudan”;
10. Welcomes the initiative by the GoS to open a process of holistic national dialogue and constitutional review. Council acknowledges the fact that after the separation of South Sudan, the Republic of Sudan remains with a formidable challenge of achieving unity in diversity, and encourages the political parties, civil society and armed opposition in Sudan to engage in dialogue to address the challenges of peace and security, democratization, the forging a new constitution for Sudan appropriate to the needs of its people, economic reform and the management of identity and diversity. Council emphasizes that bringing to an end all armed conflicts in Sudan is an important component for paving the way towards such a national dialogue to proceed and reach a successful conclusion. In this respect, Council expresses its deep solidarity with the people of Sudan as they approach this historic opportunity to overcome past grievances and move forward to a new era;
11. Commends the efforts of the AUHIP and the IGAD Chairperson and calls upon them to continue to assist the Parties in their efforts to resolve the conflict in the Two Areas in a comprehensive manner. Council further calls upon the AUHIP to play a role in facilitating the Sudanese process of holistic national dialogue, as deemed appropriate by the Sudanese parties.
12. Decides to remain seized of the matter.