Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat- The Arab foreign ministers’ preparatory meeting for the summit revealed Saudi efforts to arrange a meeting between UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Sudanese President Umar al-Bashir on the sidelines of the Arab summit in order to reach agreement between the UN, the Sudanese Government, the African Union (AU), and the Arab League.
Sudanese Foreign Minister Lam Akol said in statements to Asharq Al-Awsat that the joint meeting would include monitoring what was formerly agreed upon in Addis Ababa and Abuja, all of which dealt with the situation in Darfur through three successive axes. One of them is the political axis which includes a dialogue between all the concerned parties, that is, the government, the groups that signed the agreement, and the parties that opposed the Abuja agreement. He added that the expected meeting is tantamount to a joint mediation between the UN and the AU to discuss the existing situation in Darfur.
He pointed out that the second axis includes the cease fire, facilitating the delivery of relief to the victims of the existing conflict, and creating the proper atmospheres for the political dialogue. The third axis involves the peacekeeping and increasing the AU’s forces in Sudan, which was backed by the UN.
The Sudanese foreign minister accused the UN of failing and delaying to carry out its pledges to send the agreed upon numbers of military, security, and civilian personnel. He explained that the ongoing argument is over the second package that made up the contents of the message which the Sudanese president sent to the UN secretary general this month and was the reason for some parties’ misunderstanding, adding that the difference over details does not mean Sudan’s backing down on the principle.
He underlined his country’s commitment to all the elements of the Addis Ababa and Abuja agreements and Sudan’s willingness to cooperate with the UN and the AU over what was previously agreed upon.