Saudi Arabia, US welcome dialogue between Sudan’s warring sides in Jeddah

Saudi Arabia, US welcome dialogue between Sudan’s warring sides in Jeddah
Head of Sudan’s military Gen. Abdel-Fattah Burhan, left, and commander of Gen. Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo. (AFP)
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Updated 06 May 2023

Saudi Arabia, US welcome dialogue between Sudan’s warring sides in Jeddah

Saudi Arabia, US welcome dialogue between Sudan’s warring sides in Jeddah

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and the US urged the warring sides in Sudan’s conflict to engage in working toward a cease-fire, and welcomed the start of pre-negotiation talks in Jeddah.

They urged both parties to “actively engage in the talks toward a cease-fire and end to the conflict,” a joint statement said early on Saturday.

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States urge both parties to take in consideration the interests of the Sudanese nation and its people and actively engage in the talks towards a ceasefire and end to the conflict, which will spare the Sudanese people the suffering and assure the availability of humanitarian aid to affected areas.” 

Saudi Arabia and the United States also said they would like to stress the efforts of the countries and organizations that supported these talks, including the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the League of Arab States, and partners from the Trilateral Mechanism.

In a statement, the leader of Sudan's paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, confirmed participation in Jeddah talks. 

He expressed his appreciation towards Saudi Arabia for hosting the talks between the Sudanese parties. He also added that he hopes the talks will “reach their intended targets” of allowing a safe passage for civilians, and adhere to what he called his firm position on the need to reach a civilian transitional government in Sudan.

Also, Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan said the Kingdom welcomes the presence of Sudanese representatives of the from the Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces in Jeddah, to engage in dialogue. He said we hope this will lead to the end of the conflict and the return of security and stability.

“This dialogue comes as a result of international collaboration and vigorous efforts by the Kingdom with the United States of America, in partnership with the Quad countries and partners from the Trilateral Mechanism,” the statement added. 

Sudan’s Forces of Freedom and Change, a political grouping leading an internationally backed plan to transfer to civilian rule, also welcomed the Jeddah talks on Saturday.
The Jeddah initiative is the first serious attempt to end the fighting that has crippled the Sudanese government and endangered the country’s political transition following years of unrest and uprisings.
The conflict erupted on April 15 between the army of Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan and the RSF of commander Dagalo, a former militia leader known as Hemedti, following the collapse of an internationally-backed plan for a new transition with civilian parties.
Despite multiple cease-fire declarations, the fighting has showed no sign of abating.
However, Sudanese broadcasters said there was no exchange of gunfire in and around Khartoum in the early hours of Saturday.
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan, and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday discussed a plan for the warring parties to reduce tensions, the kingdom said.
A group of countries led by Britain, the United States, Germany and Norway is set to request an urgent meeting of the UN Human Rights Council on the Sudan crisis next week, a document showed on Friday.

(with inputs from AP and Reuters)