WASHINGTON D.C., United States of America, June 22, 2016 – John Kirby, Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson, Bureau of Public Affairs, Washington, DC, June 21, 2016.
The United States welcomes the Government of Sudan’s declaration of a unilateral cessation of hostilities in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile. We find this an important and welcome step towards a peaceful resolution to conflict in those states, which we would like to see extended to the Darfur region. An end to military offensives and fighting in these areas would bring much needed relief to thousands of Sudanese and create an improved environment for dialogue leading to a political solution.
We urge the Sudan Revolutionary Front to reciprocate by ceasing all military action against the Sudanese Armed Forces and recommit to the cessation of hostilities it declared nearly two months ago. We encourage both the Government of Sudan and the opposition to work under the auspices of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel to translate their cessation of hostilities declarations, which must ultimately include the region of Darfur, into a sustainable end to this conflict. A negotiated solution that addresses the key political and security drivers of conflict in all areas of Sudan will be needed in order to establish a lasting peace.
We encourage all sides to commit to allowing unfettered access for humanitarian organizations to deliver lifesaving aid to all Sudanese citizens affected by the conflict.
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 11, 2016 – The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, authorized the deployment of an African Union (AU) short-term technical election observation mission to the Darfur Administrative referendum in the Republic of the Sudan, which is scheduled to take place from 11 to 13 April 2016.
The deployment of the AU election observation mission to the referendum in Darfur follows a consultative meeting between the Sudanese delegation led by the Chairman of the Darfur Regional Authority, Dr. Tijani Sisei held with the AUC Chairperson on Wednesday 9 March 2016, and the recommendations of the AU Pre-referendum Assessment Mission to the country that took place from 30 March to 3 April 2016.
The decision of the Chairperson of the Commission is in line with the relevant AU instruments, notably paragraph VI (d) of OAU/AU Declaration on the Principles Governing Democratic Elections and paragraph 4.6 of the AU Guidelines for Elections Observation and Monitoring Missions, as well as in accordance with the special role of the AU as one of the moral guarantors of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) signed in July 2011 between the Government of the Sudan and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM).
The Mission comprises a team of ten (10) independent election experts from nine (9) AU member states and staff from the African Union Commission. The Mission will deploy to Sudan from 8 to 18 April 2016.
The Chairperson of the African Union Commission also encourages the hybrid African Union-United Nations Mission to Darfur (UNAMID) to provide, within its mandate and capabilities, the necessary logistical assistance requested by the Government of the Sudan in support of the referendum process.