HomeMiddle EastSudan factions delay post-coup deal on civilian rule

Sudan factions delay post-coup deal on civilian rule

The signing of the political agreement to name a Sudanese civilian government has been delayed until April 6, an official says.

Sudanese leaders have postponed the signing of a deal scheduled for Saturday to resume a short-lived democratic transition, an official said, amid ongoing disagreements between military factions.

The spokesman for the negotiation process, Khalid Omar Yousif, said on Twitter on Saturday that the military and civilian parties unanimously agreed to “redouble efforts to overcome the remaining hurdle in a few days and pave the way for the signing of the final political agreement on the 6th.” of April”. .

The signing of the agreement was delayed due to a lack of “consensus on some outstanding issues,” Yousif said earlier in the day.

A coup in October 2021 led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan derailed the process that began after the removal of General Omar al-Bashir in 2019.

Representatives have been negotiating an agreement for weeks, the final part of a two-phase political process launched in December to set the terms for a revived transition to civilian-led government and democratic elections.

The reform of the security forces is a key point of contention in the talks, which foresee a departure of the generals from politics once a civilian government is installed.

The December deal, denounced by critics as “vague”, was agreed by Burhan with multiple factions after nearly weekly protests since the 2021 coup.

The proposed reforms include the integration into the regular army of the powerful paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by Burhan’s deputy, Mohamed Hamdan Daglo.

Created in 2013, the RSF grew out of the Popular Defense Forces, sometimes called the “Janjaweed,” which al-Bashir unleashed a decade earlier in western Darfur against non-Arab rebels. Since then, the militia has been accused by human rights groups of having committed war crimes.

While experts have pointed to worrying rivalries between Burhan and Daglo, the two men appeared together last week, speaking in the capital Khartoum to advocate for a successful integration.

But the talks have since stalled, according to observers, with lingering disputes over a timetable for RSF’s integration.

Al Jazeera’s Hiba Morgan, reporting from Khartoum, said that “the military wants the group to integrate at the end of the two-year transition period.

“They also want an evaluation of the RSF officers and officer ranks saying that should be re-evaluated because they have not joined the military academy and have been promoted on standards that were not compatible with army standards.

“When it comes to the issue of the integration of the RSF, which has been saying repeatedly that it is part of the military, that comes down to the military and the RSF between them. A technical committee is working to try to reach an agreement in the next five days so that a final agreement is signed before April 6,” Morgan said.

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