Sudanese parties extend ceasefire deal until February

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JUBA, Dec. 15 (Xinhua) — The Sudanese government and various armed groups attending peace talks in the South Sudanese capital Juba on Sunday agreed to extend the ceasefire deal until February 2020.

Tut Kew Gatluak, head of the South Sudan mediation team, told journalists in Juba that the ceasefire deal agreed on earlier at the start of the talks in October ended on Sunday, hence the need for another extension.

Mohamed Hamdan Daqlu, deputy head of the Sudan Sovereign Council is leading the government delegation negotiating with the various rebel groups under the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) led by El Hadi Idris.

The opposition groups that are involved in the second round of talks with the Sudanese government also include Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), Sudan Liberation Movement, the Justice Equality Movement (JEM), among others.

Eltom Hajou, leader of the Democratic Union Party from central Sudan recently demanded the Sudan transitional government to undertake a review of the land laws, besides settling disputes over properties confiscated under the regime of former President Omar al-Bashir.

“We request the land issue to be resolved especially the Jezira irrigation scheme which was stolen by (Bashir’s) regime,” he said.

The opposition leader also called for the cancellation of all outstanding loans owed to the government by farmers in the central region of Sudan.

“We call for review of land laws, establishment of a development fund for central Sudan and resettlement of displaced persons,” said Hajou.

The parties are now engaged on Sunday in committee sector meetings before resuming serious talks again in the coming weeks.

Most of these opposition groups fought against the former regime of Al-Bashir’s National Congress Party which has since been dissolved by the transitional Council.

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