Sudan's NCP welcomes Eritrean initiative with SPLM-N rebels
August 31, 2012 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan's ruling National Congress Party (NCP)
said Eritrea launched an initiative to bridge the gaps between the
government and members of the rebel Sudan people's Liberation Movement
-North (SPLM-N) who are inside the country.
Badr El-Din Ahmed Ibrahim, NCP spokesperson, did not elaborate on the
capacity of those rebels who described as "parts of the SPLM-N inside the
Sudan", but the announcement is the first confirmation of an Eritrean
initiative in this regard.
The local press raised the issue of the Eritrean mediation on 18 August
saying Sudan's defence minister Abdel Rahim Hussein was in Asmara to discuss
this initiative with the Eritrean president Isaias Afewerki. The SPLM-N
chairman Malik Agar and the secretary general Yasir Arman reportedly had
been there before him.
But the Abdel-Rahim denied the report saying he just briefed Afewerki about
the talks in Addis Ababa without elaboration.
Badr El-Din told SMC, a news service sponsored by the Sudanese intelligence
and security agency, that his party welcomes the Eritrean initiative
pointing out that the Eritrean government should take into account the
positions of Sudanese government on the different issues.
He said his party has a number of demands like changing the name of SPLM-N,
disarmament of rebel combatants and changing the leadership of negotiating
team, alluding to Yasir Arman.
The NCP official did explain the links between the Eritrean efforts and the
talks held in Addis.
Sudan last month said it accepted the stipulations of the resolution 2046
which says that the talks should be based on a framework agreement signed by
the Sudanese government and the SPLM-N in June 2011, but rejected by the
Sudanese president in July.
The SPLM-N says they refuse talks with Khartoum on issues related to their
regions (Blue Nile and South Kordofan) and demand to extend the talks to
include Darfur and other issues.
The rebel group demands, further, to release its members detained by the
Sudanese authorities and to reinstate its chairman in his position of Blue