The South African Government welcomes the signing of the Pre-Negotiation Agreement for the Resumption of the Peace Process in Darfur on 6 December 2018 in Berlin, the Federal Republic of Germany. The signing of the Pre-Negotiation Agreement between the Government of Sudan, the Justice and Equality Movement-Gebril Ibrahim and the Sudan Liberation Movement-Minni Minnawi constitutes a significant step forward in advancing the Darfur peace process. It provides hope for the ultimate objective of achieving a lasting and durable peace in one of Africa’s most long-standing and protracted conflicts. Significantly, it establishes a platform for the critical commencement of substantive negotiations leading to the signing of a final peace agreement under the aegis of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel-led peace process, under the mediation of former President Thabo Mbeki.
The South African government acknowledges the vital role played by Ambassador Jeremiah Kingsley Mamabolo, the United Nations-African Union Hybrid Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) Joint Special Representative and Joint Chief Negotiator in support of advancing the peace process in Darfur. His tireless work and persistent efforts has facilitated the preparation of critical groundwork, thus paving the way for the commencement of the important phase of substantive negotiations, as a precursor to the signing of a permanent and final peace agreement for Darfur. His efforts, has in no small measure, been instrumental in building necessary trust among all the parties and instilling confidence in the integrity of the peace process.
We express also our appreciation to the Federal Republic of Germany for hosting the signing of the Pre-Negotiation Agreement and for the material and substantive support invested by the Troika (USA, UK and Norway) in the Darfur peace process, in the spirit of true partnership.
We note the agreement reached that the negotiations shall build on the foundations of the Doha Document for Peace and Darfur, and that all issues that the Parties deem instrumental for sustainable peace shall be open for negotiations towards reaching agreement, with the talks on substantive issues to take place in Doha, Qatar, in the coming month.
At this pivotal juncture in the peace process in Darfur, the South African government calls upon the parties to demonstrate strong leadership and commitment towards ensuring a successful conclusion to the negotiations and the creation of permanent and durable peace for the beleaguered and long-suffering people of Sudan. The absence of durable and sustainable peace, will inevitably delay the critical process of national reconciliation and post-conflict recovery for Sudan.
Peace in Darfur is an essential requirement for the realization of a continent free of war, conflict, and underdevelopment, as encapsulated in the African Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want, and within the broader objective of the AU’s aspirational goal of Silencing the Guns by the year 2020.
Issued by: The Department of International Relations and Cooperation