Sudan’s power-sharing government and several rebel groups are due to formalize a peace agreement on Saturday aimed at resolving decades of regional conflicts which left millions displaced and hundreds of thousands dead.
Three major groups signed a preliminary deal in August – two factions from the western region of Darfur and one from the southern region – after months of peace talks hosted by neighboring South Sudan.
Another powerful rebel group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North led by Abdelaziz al-Hilu, which had not participated in initial peace negotiations, agreed last month to hold new talks hosted by South Sudan.
Tut Gatluak, the South Sudanese chief mediator, told Reuters ahead of Saturday’s ceremony in Juba that the goal is to sign deals with all armed groups.
“The parties will sign their final agreement … and from there, we shall continue engaging with the other holdout groups of general Al-Hilu and Al-Noor,” he told Reuters on Friday
Leaders from Kenya, Ethiopia, Chad, Egypt as well as the foreign minister of Saudi Arabia will also attend the event, he added.
Sudan’s new civilian and military leaders, who have shared power since then, say ending conflicts is a top priority to help bring democracy and peace to a country in crisis.
The deal sets out terms to integrate rebels into the security forces, be politically represented, and have economic and land rights. A new fund will pay $750 million a year for 10 years to the impoverished southern and western regions and the chance of return for displaced people is also guaranteed. Sources: Reuters