Sunday, February 18, 2007

Darfur rebel talks delayed

Feb 17 2007 Reuters report via Alarab - excerpt:
A conference aimed at trying to unite the divided rebels of Sudan's western Darfur region has been postponed again, this time to enable a new breakaway rebel faction to join the talks, a rebel commander said on Sunday.

Commander Jar el-Neby said that a faction had broken away from the National Redemption Front (NRF) rebel group and asked to attend the talks, prompting a delay to await their arrival.

"We believe they'll be a valuable addition to us, and thus we've decided to postpone the conference temporarily," Neby said.

He gave no new date for the meeting, originally scheduled for Monday.

Divisions among Darfur's rebel factions have been a factor in delaying peace talks with Khartoum, and the conference to try to unite their positions has been delayed many times, twice because of government bombardment.

The NRF, a coalition of rebels who rejected a peace deal with the government in May, fragmented after disagreements about whether to accept a ceasefire negotiated last month by Bill Richardson, governor of the U.S. state of New Mexico.

One of the largest rebel factions said on Thursday it had agreed to the ceasefire with the government.
A child at Abu Shouk camp, N Darfur, W Sudan

Photo: A child's hand grasps barbed wire at Abu Shouk camp, located 7km north-west of Al-Fasher, the capital of North Darfur, in 2006. A planned UN human rights mission to the strife-torn region of Darfur said that it would carry on its work outside Sudan after being denied entry visas.(AFP/File/Ramzi Haidar)

Note, 17 Feb 2007 Sudan welcomes EU envoy for DDDC.

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