Sudan’s pro-democracy faction accepts UN-brokered talks | United Nations News

The Forces of Freedom and Change said they would participate in UN-sponsored talks to end months of political stalemate.

A prominent Sudanese pro-democracy group has conditionally accepted a UN offer to broker an end to the political stalemate following the October military coup.

Jaafar Hassan, spokesman for the Central Council of Freedom and Change Forces (CCFFC), said in a press statement on Sunday that the council had decided to accept the invitation of the United Nations mission (UNITAMS) to support dialogue between the parties to the Sudanese crisis.

Hassan said a CCFFC delegation will meet with UNITAMS on Sunday to present the coalition’s vision regarding the dialogue initiative between the different Sudanese parties.

Another key civilian group, the Sudanese Professionals Association, however, rejected the UN offer.

Protesters have staged regular marches against the army since it overthrew the civilian-led government of Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok last October. They want the military to be kept out of the transitional government coalition.

Hamdok was reinstated on November 21 under an agreement that called for an independent technocratic cabinet under military control.

But Sudan’s pro-democracy movement has denounced the deal, insisting that power be handed over to an all-civilian government. Hamdok resigned in early January, citing longstanding disagreements with military leaders and the slow pace of reform.

The CCFFC’s decision to participate in the UN-brokered talks comes as regional and international efforts to resolve the crisis intensify.

The African Union envoy, Edewe Bankole, is in Khartoum where he met with representatives of the Forces for Freedom and Change.

Bankole said the aim of the talks was to listen to the views of all Sudanese in order to find solutions to this crisis.

Separately, David Satterfield, the new US envoy to the Horn of Africa, is scheduled to travel to Sudan next week where he and US Under Secretary of State for African Affairs Molly Phee will meet military and political figures as well as pro-democracy activists.

The meeting aims to “mobilize international support” for the United Nations mission to “facilitate a new civilian-led transition to democracy” in Sudan, the US State Department said in a statement.

The CCFFC had earlier stipulated the end of what it called the state of coup, the end of violations and the lifting of the state of emergency.

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