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KHARTOUM - 4 Aug 2018

Sudan asks holdout groups to join fresh talks in Nairobi

Sudan’s foreign minister Al-Dirdiri Mohamed Ahmed has asked South Sudan’s holdout opposition groups to join a fresh round of talks in Kenya, saying a political solution is still being forged through the IGAD process.

“The South Sudanese peace process is continuing. There is a third round of talks that will be held in Nairobi… The third round of talks will be an opportunity to the holdout groups to join those who have signed in Khartoum,” Al-Dirdiri said at a press conference held in Khartoum on Saturday.

Minister Al-Dirdiri did not specify the exact date of the next round of peace talks in Nairobi.

The South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) and the SPLM-FDs are all non-signatories to the governance agreement that the government and other opposition groups, including the SPLM-IO initialed last week.

Al-Dirdiri, who is also the chief mediator, said that the holdout groups can alternatively form political parties in the country if they fail to join the upcoming transitional government, pointing out that the Khartoum peace agreement will create a conducive political atmosphere in South Sudan.

“What has been achieved in Khartoum is enough to end the conflict in South Sudan. The next round of talks will be moved to Nairobi to discuss the remaining issues that were not given to us.  In Nairobi the parties will also discuss how the other parties can join the peace agreement so that it becomes inclusive,” he said.

The Sudanese government official pointed out that that East African leaders had already been invited to witness the final singing ceremony of the governance deal in Khartoum on Sunday around 12 pm.