March 29, 2013 (JUBA) - Sudanese government has again on Tuesday closed its borders with South Sudan, just a week after Khartoum threatened to treat South Sudanese in Sudan as foreigners.
On Tuesday, South Sudan’s Renk county commissioner in West Nile state, (former Upper Nile sate), Stephen Chan Aluong, said his county has officially received a message from the White Nile state governor of Sudan that the national government has issued a directive ending cross border movement with the neighbouring South Sudan.
“It is very clear that the closing directives were issued by Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir and given as a directive of action to White Nile governor,” Aluong told on Tuesday.
“Even people who are taking their relatives to hospitals in Sudan have been stopped from crossing the border by border Sudanese authorities,” he said.
Sudan threatened two weeks ago to close the border, stop medical and education incentives South Sudanese enjoys in north and treat them as foreigners over charges that Juba continues to support Sudanese rebels. South Sudan has denied this allegation and insists on dialogue as the way to resolve the differences.
Commissioner Aluong said Sudanese authorities close the border last week when two military planes bombarded border areas inside South Sudan.
“When they [Sudanese] bombarded our villages and military barracks, they also stop people from crossing into Sudan or to South Sudan. This is something that authorities in White Nile state has continued to impose over the last five days,” Aluong added.
Sudanese moves to close its borders with South Sudan just came a day after South Sudan government accused Sudanese government’s forces of carrying out air bombardments in Upper Nile state.
According to South Sudanese army, Sudanese warplanes allegedly dropped 12 bombs on police station in Upper Nile state, claims denied by Sudanese army.
The two countries which emerged out from the 21 years old civil war in 2005 through comprehensive peace agreement (CPA) which cleared a roadmap for the South semi-autonomous region to determine its future through 2011 referendum.
Earlier on January this year, Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir ordered the re-opening of his country’s border with South Sudan for the first time since the region seceded in 2011 to become an independent nation.
The two states, which accuse each other of backing armed rebellions against their respective governments, decided in November to revitalize the demilitarised zone which is on the border and had been agreed upon in 2012 signatures by both sides.
On 17 this month, the Sudanese government in its weekly cabinet meeting chaired by President Omer al-Bashir decided to end open door policy for South Sudanese.
Khartoum said no South Sudanese national will be allowed to reside in the country without identity card from his or her government and an entry visa.
March 21, 2016 (JUBA) – Juba on Monday said it was in talks with Khartoum over border tensions linked to security matters in addition to demarcations of their common border as well as oil charges for transiting Sudanese territory to the international markets.
Speaking in an interview on Monday, Foreign Minister, Barnaba Marial Benjamin, said the South Sudanese government was negotiating with the neighbouring Sudanese government to resolve the matters through diplomatic channels instead of resorting to media which has been addressed by the 2012 cooperation agreement.
“There are better ways to resolve matters which have emerged to the concern of the parties in the agreement. The 2012 cooperation agreement which we have signed with the government of Sudan has clear mechanisms in place to be used. Also the agreement does not allow the two countries to host and allow their borders to be used by a negative and hostile force against the other,” said Benjamin.
“We have complied with this but if there is a concern from the Sudanese side, there is a body which deals with such concerns. We have Joint Political Security Mechanism. This is the body which deals with complaints from either side. The Sudanese government should have used this body and I am sure we would have responded to their concerns instead of going to the media,” he added.
Minister Benjamin further also criticized the Sudanese government’s recent decision to deny South Sudanese who fled to their country the right to reside in Sudan with no valid documents, adding that Juba will not reciprocate.
He lamented that the South Sudanese people believed they are one and the same people with the Sudanese but who have only been divided by political ideologies to become two countries.
“The division of Sudan into the south and north should not be used to punish the ordinary citizens, who share a lot in common because the country has been divided. As the government we are not saying the government of Sudan should not do what it sees right for its citizens and their country. The government of Sudan has the right to enact its own laws because that is their country and no one would stop them except Sudanese themselves,” he said.
“But as the government of the republic of South Sudan, I assure you of our commitment to continue to [work] hand in hand with brothers and sisters from Sudan to achieve the objective of the cooperation agreement because our relationships between Sudan and South Sudan should be treated as not short term relationship.”
Benjamin further explained that the two countries should be cooperating as neighbours forever and to develop special relationship because they are one people in the two countries.
“So there is no way you can treat citizens like the other foreign nationals. The Sudanese citizens in South Sudan now are working and living as citizens of this country. We expect the same treatment from Sudan,” he added.
The minister said President Salva Kiir would soon call the Sudanese president, Omer al-Bashir, over the matter and to close the chapter and begin a new page through diplomatic channels.
“Our president, General Salva Kiir would soon call his brother, Sudanese president Omer al-Bashir so that they discuss this and other issues as brothers as they have always done on difficult matters. I am sure they reach an understanding as usual. They have done that before and I am confident they will also do it. The ground work is being arranged through our embassy in Khartoum and here in Juba.”
He did not however provide the date and time when the two leaders would call each other and remains unclear what are the issues they would discuss.
The two countries, once on Sudan before July 2011, have been accusing each other of supporting the other’s rebel movements across their common borders.
March 21, 2016 — Egyptian foreign minister Sameh Shoukry said Sunday that Egypt and Sudan are working to unify their stance on several regional issues, pointing to the Sudanese support of the Egyptian candidate for the position of Arab League secretary-general, Ahmed Abou El-Ghiet.
Shoukry said, in an interview with state-run MENA, that both countries are interested in continuing consultations on bilateral challenges. He added that the supreme joint committee of both countries, which will hold a meeting in Cairo soon, will launch bilateral projects and agreements.
Deputy foreign minister Osama Al-Magdoub is scheduled to visit Khartoum this week to head preparations for the joint committee meetings. Al-Magdoub will also present Egypt’s proposals regarding projects that could be carried out in coordination between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia.
Regarding the trilateral cooperation between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia, Shoukry said he discussed water cooperation, as well as economic and trade cooperation, with Sudanese president Omar Al-Bashir and his foreign minister Ibrahim Ghandour.
Shoukry also discussed, with Sudanese irrigation minister Moataz Moussa, the latest developments regarding the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), and the preparations for the signing of the contract for both technical offices set to prepare the technical studies about the impact of the GERD on Egypt and Sudan. Shoukry described the meeting as fruitful.
Egypt is also consulting with Sudan on efforts to restore stability in South Sudan. Shoukry highlighted the importance of enforcing a peaceful solution to reach an agreement between the warring sides.
He added that Egypt received Riek Machar, the leader of the South Sudanese rebels, in an effort to converge views between him and the South Sudanese president Salva Kiir, pointing out that that turmoil in South Sudan will the affect the North.
Shoukry added that the viewpoints of Egypt and Sudan are aligned with regards to the Libyan crisis, with both countries supporting the new Libyan government of national unity.
“Libya is a major challenge for Egypt and Sudan,” Shoukry said. Egypt is looking forward to the formation of the new unity government, which should work to satisfy the needs of the Libyan people, Shoukry continued.
Representatives of Libya’s neighbouring countries are scheduled to hold a meeting in Tunisia Tuesday.
February 11, 2016 (JUBA) — South Sudan rebel leader, Riek Machar was on Thursday appointed the country’s first vice president in accordance with last year’s peace accord.
In a decree, read on the state-ownedSSTV Thursday, South Sudanese President Salva Kiir also appointed James Wani Igga as the county’s vice president.
The appointments, according to the presidential decree, were made in accordance to the 2015 peace agreement and powers given to Kiir by the 2011 Transitional Constitution.
The armed opposition is yet to comment on the latest development, but the regional bloc that mediated the talks, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), gave the peace parties up to the first week of February to form a Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU).
The presidential decree number 60 appointed Machar as the first vice president and decree number 59 relieved Igga from the position he previously held since August 2013.
Machar was removed from the vice presidency by President Kiir in July 2013.
Ten of thousands of people were killed and over two million displaced from their homes since disagreements within South Sudan’ ruling party triggered a violence in the country.
January 31, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s vice president Hasabo Mohamed Abdel-Rahman has emphasised that the ongoing dialogue conference won’t recommend normalization of ties with Israel.
- Minister Ibrahim Ghandour
The national dialogue initiated by president Omer Hassan al-Bashir last year has officially started in Khartoum last October amid boycott by main opposition parties and armed rebel groups.
Abdel-Rahman, who addressed the final session of the societal dialogue Sunday in Khartoum, said the Sudanese leadership won’t let down or betray its people, stressing that relations with Israel wouldn’t be normalized.
He underlined commitment of the presidency to implement the outcome of the political and societal dialogue, calling for abandoning verbal and physical violence and resorting to dialogue instead of war.
Last November, the head of the little-known Independent party and member of the dialogue conference made a request for normalization with Israel arguing that there was no justification for hostility towards Israel. He pointed out that this stance took a toll on the country politically and economically.
On 18 January, member of the dialogue foreign relations committee Ibrahim Suleiman said views on normalizing relations with Israel have varied between those calling for full normalization and those who reject the idea categorically, saying few members indicated the proposal could be adopted under specific conditions.
Suleiman described the position of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) towards the normalization proposal as “unclear”, saying the view which the latter presented at the conference calls for establishing good relations with all nations.
It is worth to mention that the NCP’s head of political sector, Mustafa Osman Ismail, had earlier said the decision to normalize relations with Israel must be made by the committees of dialogue conference.
Also, Sudan’s foreign minister Ibrahim Ghandour said his country wouldn’t mind considering the possibility of normalizing ties with Israel, underlining that Sudan doesn’t establish relations with one country at the expense of another country.
His statement raised strong reactions within the ruling party and Sudanese Islamists.
Sudan has no diplomatic relations established with Israel and remains hostile to the Jewish state on the grounds that it is occupying Arab lands.
Until recently the Sudanese passport had a stamp on it reading that it is valid for “All Countries Except Israel”.
January 27, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir Wednesday has ordered to open joint border with the neighbouring South Sudan .
- al-Bashir and Salva Kiir
The official news agencySUNA reported that the Bashir has issued a presidential decree ordering to open the border with the South Sudan and "directed the concerned authorities to take all the necessary measures for the implementation of this decision on the ground".
Sudan closed its border with the South Sudan in June 2011, one month before the formal declaration of independence.
At the time, the decision interved days after the start of a rebellion in the South Kordofan by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N). Khartoum accused Juba of supporting the former members of the ruling party in South Sudan.
Last week, Bashir directed to reduce the transit fees for the oil produced in South Sudan. On Monday, President Salva Kiir responded by ordering his army to withdraw from border with Sudan to 5 miles [8km].
Kiir further disclosed that he had dispatched a personal special envoy to the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, to convey to President al-Bashir his desire to normalise ties with Sudan.
Kiir also predicted that Bashir would direct to open the joint borders for communications, trade and relationship between the peoples of the two, once one, but split nations.
Last November the two countries agreed to reactivate the safe border demilitarized zone agreed on 27 September 2012 and to deploy the UNISFA supported joint monitoring force..
In the past, Khartoum refused to open the border, asking Juba to implement the security agreement and to stop its support to Sudanese rebel groups.
January 25, 2016 (JUBA) - South Sudanese President, Salva Kiir, has ordered his army to withdraw from border with Sudan to 5 miles [8km] away from the border, saying this was in implementation of the peace agreement signed 11 years ago with Sudan and reaffirmed in the cooperation agreement signed in 2012 after independence of the world’s youngest nation.
- al-Bashir and Salva Kiir
"Today, I want to announce to you, beloved citizens of the Republic of South Sudan, that I have instructed those who are concerned with this matter within our government to withdraw forthwith, any of our Republic of South Sudan army units on the borders, to at least five miles south of our common borders of 1st January 1956, in accordance with our commitment to the terms of The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005 with Khartoum,” the statement reads in part.
The president, according to the statement on Monday, revealed that he had dispatched personal special envoy to the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, to convey to President Omer al-Bashir his desire to normalise ties with Sudan.
"My dear beloved citizens of South Sudan, this is to inform you that during the last three weeks, soon after Christmas, I had decided that we must normalize our relations with our brothers and sisters of our sisterly neighbouring Republic of the Sudan. I had dispatched my personal special envoy to Khartoum since the end of December 2015, who has been discussing this matter of the normalization of our common borders with the Sudanese authorities in Khartoum,” he said.
Kiir also pledged that he will activate all the committees tasked with the implementation of the cooperation agreement, adding that he also understood huge populations from the two countries live in the states at the common borders.
“It is our obligation, responsibility, and duty to cooperate, and to normalize our relations with our brothers and sisters in the Republic of The Sudan for the sake of our people on these mutually agreed common borders.”
He expressed optimism that his counter-part, President Bashir, will also respond “positively” to his message of normalization of the relations and will open the common borders for communications, trade and relationship between the peoples of the two, once one, but split nations.
The new tone to expedite good relations with Khartoum comes as Khartoum agreed to review its oil charges in response to a request by the South Sudanese government. The collapse of oil prices has left the new country virtually with no significant revenues.
Jan 21, 2016 (Roi Kais - Israel News) - While Jerusalem and Khartoum are a long way from normalized relations, the last few months have seen Sudan edge closer to the moderate Sunni camp while speaking openly about improved ties with Israel.
- Minister Ibrahim Ghandour
Relations between Israel and Sudan may be experiencing an unexpected, albeit slight, thaw.
A few days ago, an "international Sudanese dialogue forum" came to a close in Sudan, aimed at uniting the various dominant parties and armed groups in the country. During the forum, which was launched in October by President Omar al-Bashir, the groups discussed various topics such as state law, personal freedoms and foreign policy.
Surprisingly, the issue of normalizing relations with Israel came up a number of times over the three months.
"There is no justification for Sudan having hostile relations with Israel, because it will pay a political and economical price for it," said the head of the Sudanese Independent Party, who viewed the lifting of US sanctions against Sudan as the opening point for normalizing ties with Jerusalem. The sanctions were put in place around two decades ago as a response to Sudan's support for terrorism.
The statements of the Sudanese Independent Party chairman were surprising, but not as surprising as those of Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour.
"The matter of normalized relations with Israel is something that can be looked into," Ghandour said during a convention in the capital Khartoum, in response to an argument heard at the event that Sudan's belligerent stance towards Israel is an embarrassment to Washington.
According to this argument, improved ties with Israel would open the door to creating better ties with the US government. Ghandour's announcement stirred up controversy in Arabic media, leading him to clarify that Sudan is not linking its relations with any specific country to those with another state.
Participants at the forum understood the message that the foreign minister was sending them and several dozen said that they support the establishment of ties with Israel under certain conditions.
"The Arab League supports this approach," said one forum member, Ibrahim Sliman.
Members of al-Bashir's ruling party say that there has been no discussion relating to relations with Israel in any party meetings.
Al-Bashir, who is subject to an international arrest warrant by the Hague for war crimes, said in November 2012 that normalization with Israel is a "red line." His declaration came shortly after Israel attacked a weapons factory in the center of Khartoum.
The surprising dialogue that has arisen surrounding Israel-Sudan relations is likely due to the dramatic developments in the Middle East over the last few months. Nonetheless, it seems that full normalization is still some way off.
Sudan appears to have been edging closer to the moderate Sunni camp over the last two years, while distancing itself from Iran's Shi'i leadership. Two weeks ago, Sudan cut its diplomatic ties with Iran following an attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran.
Over the last few years foreign and Sudanese media have addressed Israel Air Force attacks inside Sudan, aimed at, according to the reports, preventing weapons deliveries to Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Hezbollah.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khameini and al-Bashir. Are weapons shipments from Sudan to Iran a thing of the past? (Photo: AP, Motti Kimchi, AFP)
Relations between Sudan and "resistance movements," i.e. Hamas and Hezbollah, strengthened during the 1990s, particularly since al-Bashir's assumption of power. Sudan's support for Al-Qaeda and its leader Osama Bin Laden embroiled it in a dispute with the US, which hurt Khartoum both politically and economically.
The change began in September 2014 when al-Bashir closed Iranian centers in Sudan and expelled the Iranian cultural attaché under the claim that he had spread Shi'ism in the Sunni country. Sudan was one of the first countries to join the war against the Houthi rebels in Yemen, who are supported by Iran. The peak was reached with Sudan's severing of diplomatic ties with Iran two weeks ago, a step taken by a number of other Sunni countries.
It is not inconceivable that Sudan's actions are a means of winning financial rewards from Saudi Arabia and that it is interested in normalizing ties with Israel in order to improve its financial situation. It is worth remembering that one American visitor who leaked to Wikileaks quoted an adviser to President al-Bashar, Mustafa Osman Ismail, saying in a meeting with senior state officials: "If things with the US go well, you will help us ease matters with Israel, your closest ally in the region."
January 2, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Secretary General of Sudan’s Popular Congress Party (PCP) Hassan al-Turabi said that dialogue is the only option to overcome the national crisis, pointing his party calls for a two-year interim government headed by president Omer al-Bashir.
- Bashir shakes hands with Turabi - 2014
In an interview with the Qatari Al-Sharq newspaper Saturday, Turabi called for allowing freedoms and securing basic rights to resolve the Sudanese crisis, saying that dialogue is the only available option to maintain unity of the country.
He called for establishing good governance that is based upon law, respect for human dignity and commitment to rights and duties, demanding the review of previous governance experiences.
The Islamist leader warned that Sudan is currently facing the dangers of conflicts and disintegration for domestic and external reasons.
“We fear [that Sudan could face the danger] of Somalization or [the fate of countries] surrounding us such as Syria, Libya and Yemen,” he said
“It is high time to end the crises and stop the war in Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile as well as [facing] the external threats and the economic hardships following the secession of South Sudan which led to the loss of 50% of the oil revenues,” he added
Turabi pointed that Sudan is witnessing major changes due to the large increase in the number of colleges and the widespread use of modern means of communication, saying dealing with those developments requires new kind of thinking.
He said his party accepted to participate in the national dialogue initiative launched by President Bashir due to recent developments, noting that all political parties chose to engage in the dialogue.
“Dialogue has become a strategic choice that is adopted by the [political] parties and the armed groups and even the Western nations were convinced [that it is the only option] due to the high cost of conflicts,” he said
The government-led national dialogue conference was inaugurated in Khartoum on October 10th amid large boycott from the major political and armed opposition.
The Islamist leader disclosed that the government and the rebel Sudanese People’s liberation Movement/North (SPLM-N) have made progress in the security talks on South Kordofan and the Blue Nile particularly with regard to the ceasefire and the humanitarian issues.
Turabi added that he was convinced that dialogue can’t achieve the entire demands of the opposition, saying the transition could be achieved by negotiating issues under discussion.
“Many ideas and papers were being presented [to the dialogue] six committees and the outcome of the [dialogue] would establish the bases for the transition,” he said
“ Several views have been laid out [in the dialogue] including amending the constitution, interim period, institutions of governance, formation of a mini government, introducing a post of a prime minister and the continuation of the [current] National Assembly to amend the constitution,” he added
He said that his party called for a two-year transitional government to be headed by President Bashir and a cabinet with large executive powers besides keeping the current legislative institutions to approve the outcome of the dialogue.
“General elections should be held following the end of the interim period and the incumbents of the constitutional and legislative posts wouldn’t be allowed to participate in it. The elected Constitutional Assembly would approve the country’s permanent constitution. Presidency would be rotated among members of a council of states that is formed in a manner to reflect diversity in Sudan,” he said.
He stressed that no party participating in the dialogue would achieve 100% of its objectives, noting the ultimate goal of the dialogue is to resolve the country’s crises, maintain its unity and agree on a permanent constitution.
The PCP was among the first political forces to approve Bashir’s call for the national dialogue. Also, the lslamist party is the only significant political force that didn’t suspend its participation in the process.
Khartoum, 31 Dec. (SUNA) - Following is an unofficial translation of the speech delivered by the President of the Republic, Field Marshal Omar Hassan Ahmed Al Bashir on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Sudan National Day:-
- Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir
In The Name Of Allah, the Graceful, the Dispenser of Grace
Praise be to Allah, the Unique, the One, the Self-sufficient, the One Who begets not, nor was He begotten, and to whom there in none co-equal or comparable unto Him.
And peace and blessing be upon our Master, Prophet Mohammed, His kin and companions
The very loyal masses of our people
Honorable guests present here
Peace and Blessing of Allah be upon you
Let us start by greeting our forefathers who founded the independence of our nation, on this occasion when we are celebrating the 60th anniversary of our august independence…
The tree that begot this fruit was planted by those robust arms…that tree was watered by the noble blood of our martyrs... for our noble nation to reap that fruit… the heroic encounter that represented the fight for liberation from the colonization… that spirit which held high the value of the homeland …that no voice shall be above the voice of the homeland.. That no partisan voice or personal agenda be given priority… that no tribal trends be entertained… It sufficed for them to say their forefather remains the Nile and that their ethnic affiliation is for the Sudan…that spirit continued high until the banner of our independence flew high on the mast.…
History wrote in its books the birth of our nation. All people were united together for the dignity and the pride of our nation and our people… the colonizers that gambled on sowing the seeds of sedition amongst our people, seeking by that to remain weighing on the chest of this dignified homeland… they lost the gamble... its arrow went astray…
Let us renew our salutation for the forefathers and foremothers of our independence…that generation of heroism and of sacrifice… our salutation for them as we are standing under the shadow of the tree they sow, leaving behind a pound homeland and a great nation.
Our salutation for them while we are following their wisdom and are inspired by their memory which will remain the driving force for our march… we salute their sacrifices and their noble stands…without theme we would not have gained our independence… let our slogan remain the one they raised high… let us personify these aspiration of their as a living reality … let us translate that spirit into a comprehensive document that would stand as a proof to our resolve that Sudan remains a homeland that host all Sudanese people, without exception….a document that stands as an edifice of unity in diversity…
Celebrating the anniversary of our independence is an occasion for us to learn from the lesson of the past and to think about the present and future of our nation… the spirit that led our forefathers and guided them in their great procession and shade light along the march towards their great aspiration and lofty goals… the outstanding lesion that will remain witness to the greatness of our nation is that of forgetting all narrow affiliation what it comes to anything related to our homeland and to our nation…
Thus we will take up this august opportunity to renew our call and to repeat our pledge with all the political and societal spectrums in our country to stand together and back each other, discard away any affiliation save that to our homeland and our nation… let us build the foundation for the rule of law… all are equal before the eye of the law…that yard stick for taking the lead is the sincere performance…good work, sincerity, loyalty for the homeland and to the nation
Sudan has faced so many a challenges… but it came out armed with huge experiences during its march … a march marred by so many a difficulty…. But against it has been able to overcome them all and achieve outstanding success and make huge leaps…. Sudan is thus able to walk steadily in towards the phase of achieving peace and set the foundation for new values for managing political differences and for observing a wider participation by all the sons of the homeland…
The national building process will not be complete without discussing the major issues before which the colonizers set so many a stumbling block to frustrate our march towards completing a national dialogue therein….
The colonizers worked to widen the gap through the adoption of the policy of divide and rule… thus the national governments that took over inherited huge problems and tremendous challenges…leaving them with no time to arrange the priorities and to continue discussions on the questions related to independence…
thus we have unleashed the question of comprehensive all-inclusive national and the societal dialogue that leave no one behind… no view will be barred and all issues are open for discussion…
We have committed ourselves to preparing the climate for that dialogue…therefore we invited all to participate in it…
we provided the assurances and agreed to a 2-month ceasefire all as a show of good faith and to encourage those carrying arms to come and join the process and resort to peace, opt for dialogue as the only means for redressing grievances and ending injustice… we released detainees and welcomed anew the activities of political parties and to their organizing public debates that are governed by nothing save the regulations of the law and the public interest..
Once and on the this great occasion, it pleased me to declare a government decision extending by one more month the ceasefire and renew our call for those carrying arms to listen to the voice of reason and to join the peace process and participate in the national dialogue which is managed by pure Sudanese will, under the roof of the homeland…
The only supervisor is the people, and the guarantees is the national consciousness… the implementation of the outcome of this dialogue is a pledge that we declare before Allah the almighty and a promise to our people..
We would like to warmly great those who responded to the national call and embellished the halls where the dialogue is taking place through their serious dialogue and constructive views …
Here we would like to announce extending by one month the duration of the national dialogue conference which was initially set to conclude its session on the 10th of coming month of January...
Dear august citizen
We have initiated a comprehensive reform programme… this programme is based on the concept that any comprehensive renaissance will not be completed without a reform to the whole political situation in our country and a freedom for the partisan environment so as to overcome the falling-out and differences over the minor issues at the expense of the core issues…
We look to the political parties and to the groups taking part in national dialogue to work for preparing a national document in which they would specify the strategic interest of our nation and lay the foundation for a sound political structure that would hold high the loyalty to the homeland over all other partisan loyalties... And that all political affiliation channels should be veered to work in the interest of the homeland not in the narrow interests of political entities...
The other pillar of reform is that which is related to the state reform in which we have so far achieved great strides, through the adoption of the principle of transparency in the public performance of the state, and also adopted the programme for combatting corruption, and realizing piety in dealing with public money...
The relevant laws and regulations related to the erection of the corruption combat authority will soon be issued, after the legislature passed the overall governing laws…
The state reform programs will continue towards their lofty ends, improving the service provision for the people and remedying of all irregularities in the civil service, putting in place legislations related to the legal reform… as the legal reform is the door to all other reform…
We will not have any peace of mind until all structures that would cement the state of law and the state of institution, are in place…
At the top of our priority in the state reform program, is improving the livelihood of the people and securing their basic daily needs….
Let us thank God the Almighty Who saved us against sliding into bankruptcy... the guess was that upon the separation of south Sudan, Sudanese economy would collapse, but Allah Who possess the treasure of the earth and the skies, arranged all for us in a way that we were able to overcome the chock successfully through the three year economic reform programme that south to restore the stability of the national economy and reign the galloping daily inflation…
While we celebrate the memory of the independence anniversary, let us remind each other of the success that the Sudan has achieved during the past few years, notwithstanding the difficulties and the embargo, the legally unjustified embargo imposed by unjust powers, without any logic, particularly after Sudan has met all its international legal and constitutional commitments. But that attitude remained with them, providing mirage promises that would be considered by thirty water…
we have come to know their intentions and we understand their mentality, and thus we depended on Allah the lord of the two worlds, and thus here we are entering the second year in our five year economic reform programme which comes under the slogan of boosting production for export, improve the living conditions of the people …
This was the central pole of our election programme, and we will give due concern to this matter, following it up daily until our economy is unleashed and moves towards better and wider horizons.. We want to reward our people for their patience and tolerance
Today we want to announce to our people that we will overcome these challenges through the implementation of the government plan that seeks to boost the productive sectors in the agriculture and industrial domains, redress the imbalance in the trade in a way that would ensure stability of our national economy and prosperity for our people.
Dear august people
The blessing of security which Allah bestowed on us the people of the Sudan, amid surrounding world full of political and security instabilities… this blessing require our appreciation and thanks…
There is no doubt that the modernism which remained the essential criteria that characterized our people who have adopted tolerance and rejection of fundamentalism and extremism … these are the reasons, in addition to the blessing of Allah, that prevented or people from sliding into the cycle of hatred and violence… thus comes out call for international institutional reform, and for ending grievances and lifting injustice from oppressed people , for ending the illegal occupation and settlement in accordance with the international legitimacy and international resolutions.
Dear brother and sisters
Sudan's foreign policy remained stable in its declared positions of noninterference in the domestic affairs of others and of adopting a good neighborhood policy, respecting the sovereignty of other states…
Thus we have become a center for which brothers flock and our country has become an accepted mediator in many of the regional conflict… our relations have also witnessed a steady developments with brothers and friends… from here we send a sincere greeting to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia which is leading an international coalition for the restoration of the legitimacy in Yemen… our stand has been a solidarity because of the importance of stability for all Arab countries… our greeting for the United Arab Emirates, for Kuwait and for the state of Qatar and for other Arab and African countries who have been supporting our country and coordinating with it in the regional and international forum, and we do appreciate the role and interaction of the African Union towards finding a number of questions related to the African home.
Internationally we have adopted a policy that is based on openness, balance and cooperation for creating a world in w which justice and democracy prevail….
We have spared no efforts in contributing towards achieving peace and stability in our immediate neighbors, we gave particular priority to the diplomacy of development, trade, economy and investment…
We will continue our diplomacy in strengthening the bonds and joint interests and in contributing to the stability of the people and their countries… in this context we would like to reaffirm our keenness the restoration of stability and peace to the republic of south Sudan, reaffirming once again our keenness to implement the agreements that we signed with it and our support for the agreement concluding by the parties to the conflict there.
In this celebration of our national day anniversary, we greet our gallant armed forces that protect the soil of the homeland and display all in its power to secure its dignity and pride…
we are aware that today the battle field is not only in the military operation scenes…we are aware the enemies are planning to undermine our resolve and to sow the seeds of demoralize us… because the enemy want us to be a nations engulfed by depression and demoralized, to be nonproductive nation…thus the challenge facing us is to resist all malignant attempts and to inspire our people into production and work, to reply to the national call, from which we will not deviate …
Therefore we urge our media to be inspired by the lofty meanings of the independence and to lead a campaign for national construction.. Seeking the interests of the homeland and its future … let the media be at the heart of the battle... The media is a sharper weapon in today's world…
The independence anniversary coincides with the launch of the biggest human development project in the history of our homeland… with programs that center on provision of basic services to the people starting with education, particularly the basic education whose budget have doubled more than once, and the provision of Saudi funding which is evaluated by the World Bank as worth more than 150 million us dollars…
The programme of the primary health care which is tripled from 840 million to 2.1 billion Sudanese pounds for the year 2016 and also the inclusion of additional new 500 health units, the full rehabilitation of 200 rural hospitals and the creation of 20 new reference hospitals, and advance diagnosis centers…
In addition to this there are the drinking water projects that seek to resolve the problem of drinking water once and for ever, with the support and backing of our brothers in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Kuwait.
The independence coincides with other major irrigation project after the completion of the construction of the dam and we expect the irrigated areas to increase by 4 million fedans, that it is a double of the area that was irrigated during all the six decades that followed our independence.
Work will continue in the infrastructures of the roads and electricity, prepare the climate for investment in the huge Sudanese resources in the agriculture, oil, mining and investment in the informatics and continuation in the reform programs of the institutions of the civil services to reach the desired level of effective performance.
Dear guests present here
The real independence is to be inspired by the loft values of genuinely adhering to the homeland, discharge our duties in honesty, be sincere in serving the grand objectives of development and construction.
Farmers in the field serve the independent by doubling their production, and productivities, industrialists in their factories would cement the meaning of independence through double efforts and improving their produce, employees in the civil service and the scholar and professors and teachers are the main pillars of the state… through their sincerity and the devotion… the youth and the students and the fuel and energy that serve as impetus for this nation and its future hope. Women and the half of the community through their contribution we would complete the real meaning of independence…
Peace and blessing of Allah be upon you
December 30, 2015 (KHARTOUM) - US President Barack Obama on Wednesday congratulated the Sudanese people on the 60th anniversary of independence expressing hope that 2016 offers them an opportunity to enjoy a prosperous and peaceful future.
- US President Barack Obama
On the first of January 2016, Sudanese celebrate the 60th anniversary of independence of their country.
“On behalf of the American people, I’d like to congratulate you on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of your country’s independence,” said Obama in a message conveyed by the US embassy in Khartoum Wednesday.
It is noteworthy that this is the second time that president Obama congratulates the Sudanese people on the Independence Day following his last year’s message.
The US president usually tends to avoid addressing the Sudanese government or president Omer Hassan al-Bashir who is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in Darfur region.
Relations between Khartoum and Washington are strained as the East African country is under US economic sanctions and branded as a terrorism sponsor.
Diplomats from the two countries failed during the past years to normalise the complicated relations.
Khartoum says the improvement of bilateral relations should not be linked to internal Sudanese issues, but Washington requires ending the conflicts in South Kordofan, Blue Nile and Darfur.
Meanwhile, the spokesperson for Sudan’s foreign ministry Ali al-Sadiq said in a press release Wednesday that President Bashir received a congratulatory message from the Russian President Vladimir Putin on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of independence.
December 16, 2015 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s state security prosecution office Wednesday evening has arrested the Chief-Editors of al-Tayyar and al-Saiha daily newspapers.
Al-Tayyar Editor-in-Chief Osman Merghani was arrested shortly after he spoke along with the newspaper’s legal advisor Nabil Adeeb in a press conference in which he pledged to follow all legal procedures to lift the ban on his newspaper.
Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) seized copies of al-Tayar in the early hours of Monday from the printing house without giving reasons. On Tuesday, the newspaper was suspended indefinitely.
According to al-Tayyar journalists, this is the eighth time an issue was seized by NISS this year.
Also, the Chief Editor of al-Saiha newspaper Ahmed Youssef al-Tai was arrested Wednesday by the state security prosecution office.
During the press conference, Adeeb expressed surprise about the NISS decision to suspend a-Tayar, saying the Constitutional Court had earlier said the NISS doesn’t have the power to suspend newspapers.
He pointed that article (24) of the Constitutional Court Act prohibits resorting to any other law following its decision not to use it, adding that NISS has repeated its action by suspending al-Tayyar in clear defiance of the law and the court.
Adeeb noted that on Wednesday he submitted a claim for the protection of a constitutional right to the Constitutional Court, saying he would use the court’s ruling about the unconstitutionality of the suspension decision as a precedent.
The legal advisor also pointed that he submitted a request under article (16) to issue a temporary order to stop the suspension procedures pending the outcome of the claim in order to prevent any damage that could result from the suspension decision.
For his part, Merghani said that NISS hasn’t yet informed him of the reasons behind the suspension decision.
H pointed that he appeared Monday before the complaints committee at the National Council for Press and Publication (NCPP) to discuss a column he recently published and was seen by the committee as “inciting people to protest against the government” and a call for an “Arab Spring in Sudan”.
Merghani said he has been previously invited by some Western diplomats to leave the country following his famous assault incident, saying he declined to accept the invitation and preferred to stay in Sudan to continue the legal battle.
A group of masked gunmen on 18 July 2014 stormed the building of Al-Tayyar in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum and assaulted Merghani. They also confiscated all cellular phones and laptops of the newspaper’s staff and attacked several journalists before leaving.
The attack was thought to have been triggered by statements Merghani made during a TV talk show program in which he defended the issue of normalising relations with Israel. He also wrote a column on the same issue in Al-Tayyar.
The NISS routinely suspends and confiscates newspapers either to prevent circulation of certain stories or to punish them retroactively on previous issues.
In February, NISS seized entire print runs of 14 newspapers in one day without stating the reasons for its decision.
In June 2012, NISS suspended al-Tayar indefinitely and allowed it to resume publication two years later upon a ruling of the Constitutional Court.
JOURNALISTS UNION DENOUNCES AL-TAYAR’S SUSPENSION
Meanwhile, the pro-government Sudan Journalists Union (SJU) has condemned the indefinite suspension of al-Tayar expressing concern about the situation of the press freedoms in the country.
In a statement Wednesday, the SJU called for arriving at common concepts to maintain the balance between freedom and responsibility, demanding the launch of a transparent dialogue to stop the extraordinary measures against the newspapers.
It announced that it has embarked on intensive contacts with the political and security organs to lift the ban on al-Tayar as soon as possible.
Also, the opposition Sudanese Congress Party (SCoP) has denounced the suspension of al-Tayyar without legal justification or court ruling, describing the move as a “well-established totalitarian practice” that represents an integral part of the behaviour of the regime.
December 12, 2015 (WASHINGTON) – The United States congress is rushing a proposed legislation that would introduce sweeping changes to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) which was established to allow citizens from 38 countries to travel to U.S. without a visa for stays of up to 90 days.
Following terrorist attacks in Paris, U.S. officials have become fearful that citizens of these countries, who are members of ISIS or other terrorist groups, could utilize VWP to sneak into the county to carry out attacks.
The alleged Paris attackers were European citizens who could have theoretically entered the U.S. with little scrutiny.
If the changes to the VWP are approved, dual nationals of countries namely Iraq, Syria, Iran or Sudan and recent visitors to those countries would be unable to enter the U.S. through VWP.
There are also fears that VWP countries might reciprocate to require visas from U.S. citizens who fit into the same criteria.
Sudan is not mentioned specifically in the bill but since it is designated under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, it will be impacted. The U.S. lists Sudan as a state sponsor of terrorism and is under comprehensive economic sanctions since 1997.
For example, a French citizen with Sudanese nationality will need to apply for a visa through a U.S. embassy or consulate. Also a Dutch citizen who travelled to Sudan anytime since March 2011 will also have to go through the same process even they visited as aid workers or students.
Even though the proposed bill passed the House by a sweeping majority, some Democrat lawmakers are attempting to introduce changes to avoid discriminating based on national origin.
"Making sure that we avoid as many unintended consequences as possible is particularly important when we are proposing to disqualify specific populations of people from long standing immigration practices," a letter from 33 Democratic lawmaker reads.
“As written, H.R. 158 would result in discrimination against people simply because of their ancestry. These changes could result in our Visa Waiver Program partner nations placing new limits on travel by U.S. citizens to their countries. Fundamentally, people seeking entry into our country should be evaluated based on the specific security risk that they themselves pose – not where their parents are from”.
The White House has indicated however, that it backs the bill in its current form. It is currently in the Senate and is expected to be included in a spending package that must be approved before Wednesday to avoid a government shutdown.
Saturday 12 Dec 2015 – (Khartoum) A new round of talks on Ethiopia's under-construction Grand Renaissance Dam will take place on 27 and 28 December after Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan failed to reach a final agreement in two days of trilateral talks this weekend.
The meeting of the tripartie committee on the dam in Khartoum, in the attendance of the foreign and irrigation ministers from the three countries, aimed at refreshing technical talks on the dam and discussing concerns from the Egyptian side, ended on Saturday with “no final agreement."
According to a closing statement by Sudan's Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour, the three countries agreed to go forward with "discussion and negotiations" on the framework of shared principles that were involved in the Malabo agreement and the Khartoum's declaration of principles in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
Friday and Saturday's meetings had an atmosphere of "brotherhood, friendship, cooperation," which affirms the three countries' keenness to reach shared agreements and abandon all conflicts, the statement read.
"We are neither a mediator, nor are we neutral or biased, but we have rights just like Egypt and Ethiopia. We are moving with the negotiations in the frame of our national interests that entitle us to converge viewpoints between the three parties," Ghandour said in press statements following the meeting.
Sudan's Water Resources and Electricity Minister Moataz Moussa rejected news related to the failure of talks due to conflicts between the three countries, adding that there was an agenda that was being discussed during the two-day closed meetings.
Ahram Online was not able get an immediate comment from Egypt's representatives in the meetings.
The next talks will also take place in Khartoum, and will include the foreign and irrigation ministers of the three states, as well as the tripartite committee.
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, scheduled to be completed in 2017, will be Africa's largest hydroelectric power plant with a storage capacity of 74 billion cubic metres of water.
Egypt has repeatedly expressed concerns that filling and operating the dam on the Blue Nile will negatively affect Egypt's water supply, while Ethiopia has rejected these claims.
November 29, 2015 (JUBA) - Rebecca Nyandeng, the wife of South Sudan’s ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) founder, John Garang was reportedly assaulted at Emmanuel Jieng church in Juba, forcing some members of the congregation to abandon Sunday’s church service in protest.
An angry worshipper reportedly attempted to slap Nyandeng in church, less than 48 hours since she returned from the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.
Nyandeng, accompanied by some of the former political detainees, was asked by the pastor to kneel before the congregation for prayers. She was joined by Majaak D’Agoot and two others.Suddenly, an angry woman reportedly approached the podium and attempted to slap Nyandeng, only to be restrained.
She, however, hulled insults at the former first lady whom she accused of allegedly “betraying” her community. The woman reportedly demanded that Nyandeng as well brings her son, Mabior Garang for prayers.
Nyandeng is accused of having allegedly “sold out” the government by siding with South Sudan’s armed opposition faction (SPLM-IO) members. She has been critical of government and most supporters of the regime from her home area of Twic East and Bor have condemned her for publicly exposing civilian deaths in Juba, ignoring those killed in Bor.
While Mabior joined the SPLM-IO headed by former vice-president Riek Machar, his mother remained with the country’s former political detainees led by Pagan Amum.
Meanwhile the motive of Sunday’s attack, however, remains a subject of speculations.
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