SUDAN WATCH: UN/AU chief mediator Djibril Bassole says Darfur rebels should speak with one voice

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

UN/AU chief mediator Djibril Bassole says Darfur rebels should speak with one voice

UN chief mediator seeks joint peace front in Darfur
February 3, 2008 report from by Kennedy Abwao, PANA Correspondent, Editor Yang Lina (Ababa, Ethiopia) - excerpt:
Darfur rebels should form a united front in their negotiations with the Sudanese government for a political agreement to end the conflict in western Sudan, chief UN mediator Djibril Bassole said here Tuesday.

In an exclusive interview with PANA, Bassole, who is also the chief mediator for the African Union, said that the rebel groups had agreed to kick-off substantive dialogue with the Sudanese government but remained disunited in their approach.

"The rebels should speak with one voice. They are fighting for the same cause to better the lives of the Darfur people. They are fighting to get good governance, economic inclusion and the inclusion of women in governance.

"They (rebel groups) are divided. My duty is to call on all of parties to be united to start the mediation process," the mediator said on the sidelines of the current African Union summit in Addis Ababa. [...]

"I agreed to be mediator because I believed there was need for better conditions for the people living in African villages. These are the issues bringing conflict and the reasons why Africans are fighting," the former Burkina Faso Foreign Minister said.

The UN/AU peace mediator, who took over his new task in August 2008 after his appointment was endorsed by African leaders at a meeting in Egypt, said that the substantive peace dialogue in Darfur was progressing despite the obvious setbacks.

He said that the division among the rebel groups in Darfur remained a stumbling block for a peaceful resolution of the conflict, and that the resumption of fighting in the volatile region threatened to tear apart steps already taken to bring peace.

Bassole said that the political process was facing imminent threats from the expected issuance of a verdict from the International Criminal Court (ICC), which could see the arrest of the Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir to face war crime charges.
Note that whilst the Darfur rebels constantly fail to get their act together, they continue to delude themselves by presuming they are fit to govern Sudan and more able to do a better job of it than the current regime in Khartoum.
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