BY NEW BUSINESS ETHIOPIA REPORTER
The Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD) today (January 31, 2011) calls up on the international community to support the people of the Sudan by granting the removal of the country from the list of terrorism sponsors states.
This is indicated in a communiqué of the 17th extra-ordinary session of the IGAD Assembly of the Heads of State and Government on Sudan, Somalia and Kenya. The leaders of IGAD member states released the communiqué after discussing the progress Sudan has made in peacefully undertaking Southern Sudan referendum from January 9-15, 2011.
Expressing the determination of IGAD member states to support the capacity building and economic development of the Sudan, the leaders also call for suspension of the International Criminal Court (ICC) indictment in accordance with article 16 of the Rome Statute.
In addition, IGAD also calls upon the international community to support the people of Sudan by granting debt relief. It also expressed its confidence that the Sudanese parties would complete all the outstanding commitments in Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and resolve any pending and post referendum issues.
Until the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the Government of Sudan GOS and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) in January 2005, the North and the South Sudan were in civil war apart from a period of ten years from 1973 until 1983.
During the ensuing 21-year conflict in Africa's largest country, it is estimated that more than two million people died, four million were uprooted and some 600,000 people sought shelter beyond Sudan's borders as refugees.
The root causes which have fuelled the civil war include disputes over resources, power, the role of religion in the state, ethnicity and self-determination. The nature and size of the country's problems have frequently overflowed into neighboring countries and brought insecurity to the whole region.
Under the mediation of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the Government of the Sudan and the SPLM/A signed a series of six agreements:
• The Protocol of Machakos: Signed in Machakos, Kenya, on 20 July 2002, in which the parties agreed on a broad framework, setting forth the principles of governance, the transitional process and the structures of government as well as on the right to self-determination for the people of South Sudan, and on state and religion.
• The Protocol on security arrangements: Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 25 September 2003.
• The Protocol on wealth-sharing: Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 7 January 2004.
• The Protocol on Power-sharing: Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004.
• The Protocol on the resolution of conflict in southern Kordofan/Nuba Mountains and the Blue Nile States: Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004.
• The Protocol on the resolution of conflict in Abyie: Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004.
“…Today, the ballot box has triumphed over the bullet. It is our most sincere wish to achieve peaceful co-existence between North and South, to enable all of our peoples to live in security and prosperity,” said Salva Kiir Mayardit, First Vice President of the Republic of the Sudan and President of the Government of Southern Sudan in his statement this morning at the high-Level Meting on Sudan.
The Secretary General of the United Nations Ban Ki Moon on his part expressed his concern about Abyei and Darfur regions of the Sudan. “While the referendum process has taken place without major incident, I am very concerned at the violence that took place in Abyei during the voting period. I call on the CPA parties to prevent any further violence in Abyei and other border areas, including by influencing local leadership to exercise restraint,” said Ban Ki Moon.
The Sudan achieved its independence on January 1, 1956 from British/Egyptian rule.