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April 2011 - Posts

US removes Sudan’s largest private bank from sanctions list

April 30, 2011 (WASHINGTON) — The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Friday removed the private Bank of Khartoum from a blacklist of Sudanese entities and individuals subjected to economic sanctions since 1997.

According to the measure, the largest bank in Sudan can now ask the return of blocked funds and assets and resume its activities with the US financial institutions.

In a notice posted on its website on 28 April, the US Treasury Department announced the deletion of the Bank from its list of sanctions without providing any explanation. The statement just cited the Bank of Khartoum and its 50 branches in the country.

However, a US official said the decision is motivated by the fact that it is no longer under the Sudanese government’s control.

Following its privatization in 2002, the Bank of Khartoum is controlled by Dubai Islamic Bank which holds 60% of its shares since 2005. The bank was among 163 Sudanese entities included in the OFAC’s list.

In October 1997, the U.S. imposed comprehensive economic, trade and financial sanctions against Sudan in response to its alleged connection to terror networks and human rights abuses. Further sanctions, particularly on weapons, have been imposed since the 2003 outbreak of violence in the western Darfur region.

US officials pledged last December before the referendum of southern Sudan independence to remove Sudan from the list of states sponsoring terrorism and to ease the economic sanctions.

However Washington made it clear that lifting the comprehensive sanctions is contingent upon resolving the crisis in Darfur.

On 12 April, the OFAC issued a press release saying that South Sudan Republic (SSR) which will be declared officially on 9 July is exempt from the sanctions imposed on the Sudan since two decades.

"Following interagency consultations, OFAC has concluded that the SSR will continue to apply only to Sudan and the Government of Sudan, and that such a new state and its government will not be subject to them".

During recent visit to Washington, the secretary-general of the SPLM North Sudan, Yasir Arman, called on the U.S Administration not to lift the economic sanctions unless the government of president Omer Al-Bashir demonstrates commitment to democratic transformation.

Arman’s statement sparked fury in Khartoum where the spokesperson of the foreign ministry, Khalid Moussa, told reporters that Arman’s call constitutes "a breach of national agendas and principles."

Foreign Ministry urges US to lift sanctions

Khartoum, April 30 (SUNA)-Foreign Ministry has urged United States to lift economic sanctions it unilaterally imposed on the Sudan without pre-conditions so as to support peace process in the country. Foreign Ministry official Spokesman, Khalid Musa, said there were no longer any logical justifications to maintain the sanctions on Sudan as all commitments stipulated by the Comprehensive Peace Agreement have been fulfilled.

He said notwithstanding the positive moves to lift Bank of Khartoum from list of US sanctions, the partial lift on financial institutions falls short of the targeted objectives of full removal of all sanctions.

He pinpointed the Sudanese people have the rights to enjoy the fruit of peace for which a lot people have sacrificed, he said.

 

 

Foreign Ministry says US Administration should criticize SPLM attitude, not Al Bashir statements

 Khartoum, April 30 (SUNA)-Foreign Ministry has criticized US Assistant Secretary for State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson's statement on President Al Bashir's public address in South Kordufan.

In statement to SUNA, Foreign Ministry Spokesman, Khalid Musa said the US administration should have exercise pressures on the Government of South Sudan to drop the item which seeks to annex Abyei to the south from the South Sudan Interim Constitution.

He said the American criticism should have been directed to political behavior of SPLM which seeks unilaterally to impose administrative resolution to Abyei a move which contradicts the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, the Federal Interim Constitution and joint agreements reached by the two partners.

The Spokesman called for resolving Abyei issue through political cooperation that would taken into consideration the due rights of all parties.

 

President Al- Basher Concludes Visit to South Kordofan State

Kadugli, April 28 (SUNA) - President of the Republic, Field Marshal Omer Al-Basher said the government Program in the coming period, will be concentrated on extending the basic services to the citizens in their areas, calling on citizens to maintain peace and work for social unity. The President addressing a mass rally organized in Kadugli Stadium, Thursday in the conclusion of his visit to South Kordofanto support the National Congress's(NC) candidate to the post of the Wali (governor) of the state pledged to support the health services through the new Kadugli Hospital and the Military Hospital which he inaugurated same day. Meanwhile, the NC's candidate, Ahmed Haroun pledged to maintain security and stability in the state.

White House releases Obama birth certificate

The White House on Wednesday morning released the president's long form birth certificate (pdf) in an attempt to put "birther" questions to rest.

                 President Obama birth certificate

By Rachel Rose Hartman 

"The President believed the distraction over his birth certificate wasn't good for the country. It may have been good politics and good T.V., but it was bad for the American people and distracting from the many challenges we face as a country," White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement.

The president had released his certificate of live birth in 2008, but many "birthers" said the absence of a long form birth certificate prompted questions about Obama's birthplace of Hawaii. In recent weeks potential GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has brought birther questions into the forefront of the media.

"At a time of great consequence for this country--when we should be debating how we win the future, reduce our deficit, deal with high gas prices, and bring stability to the Middle East, Washington, DC, was once again distracted by a fake issue," Pfeiffer said. "The President's hope is that with this step, we can move on to debating the bigger issues that matter to the American people and the future of the country."

Obama admitted at a White House press conference following the document's release Wednesday morning that he's been both amused and puzzled by the degree to which his place of birth has become an issue.

The president echoed Pfeiffer's statements saying that Americans and their representatives need to come together to solve issues such as how to "invest in our future" while tackling the federal deficit and federal debt:

 

But we're not going to be able to do it if we are distracted. We're not going to be able to do it if we spend time vilifying each other. We're not going to be able to do it if we just make stuff up and pretend that facts are not facts. We're not going to be able to solve our problems if we get distracted by sideshows and carnival barkers.

Though the president didn't mention Trump by name, Obama noted that when he announced his deficit plan this month, his birth certificate, not our country's economic future, dominated the news that week.

Trump on Wednesday took full credit for the release.

"I feel I've accomplished something really really important and I'm honored by it," Trump said at a press conference held during his pre-scheduled visit today to New Hampshire. Trump noted that people have long been requesting the document, but Trump was the only one who got the president to release it. Trump suggested Wednesday this development will boost his own potential presidential candidacy.

Trump said he and others are still going to have to assess the document's authenticity. We're "going to look at it. We have to see if it's real, if it's proper," Trump said. But he added that he's "sure it's the right deal" and is looking forward to moving on to more important issues such as OPEC and China.

(Yahoo! News)  

UPDATE 9:38 a.m. EST: Story updated to reflect Donald Trump's reaction.

UPDATE 10:08 a.m. EST: Story updated to include President Obama's press comments.

President Al-Basher Welcomes Establishment of new-born State in South Sudan According to1/1/1956 Borders

Al-Fula, April 28 (SUNA) - The President of the Republic, Omer Al-Basher has affirmed the government commitment to continue with the various development programs and projects in the country, welcoming to the new-born state in South Sudan in accordance with the 2005 comprehensive peace agreement that specified the borders between the north and the south be those set in January 1956

 

President Al-Basher addressing a mass rally in Al-Fula, South Kordufan State, said his visit comes in the context of inspection of services, adding that the government will complete the implementation of the development projects which include services, water, education, electricity and roads programs

 

He renewed that Abyei is an issue of concern to the whole country, affirming that the area remains a part and parcel of north Sudan. He lauded the stances of the people of South Kordufan towards the major question and challenges the country has been facing top of which the implementation of Shariaa, Islamic Laws

 

The president described the election program of Ahmed Haroun as program for peace, development and achievements

The 50th Sudanese Polish Anniversary in the Field of Archeology

Khartoum 28th April 2011 (SUNA) - The Representative of the Polish Academy of Science Mr. Stephen Galoweelisky pointed out to the Importance of the fruitful cooperation among all sides that work in the field of archeology to carry out surveying and discovering in archaeologies site around the country

 

In a lecture he delivered at the Friendship Hall on the work of the Archeological Mission at (FARAS Archeological Area) Northern Sudan on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Sudanese Polish cooperation in the field of archeology , Mr. Galoweelisky the activities of his team that expanded from (FARAS area) till the 4th Cataract, covering the period between 7th century A.D. to the 14thA.D. pointing out to the drawings found at the Cathedral Temples discovered at( FARAS) area, in addition to the drawings on the walls of the Cathedral

 

He pinpointed to the efforts exerted by the both Sudanese and Polish sides, particularly the Expert in the Field of Archeology Dr.Yusuf Ghazi ,adding that the two Halls of Archeological Parade in Khartoum and Warsaw were established coincidently in July 1972

 

In the same context, the Polish Expert and the Member of the Team of( FARAS fossils) Boghdan Zerwisky said the work also included photographing the discovered archaeologies and the archeological areas where the Mission has been working, pointing out to the archeological areas as a center of archeological works in (Al-Zooma) area. He said the government of sudan and the government of Poland would continue their cooperation to accomplish the archeological work.

Headlines of major daily newspapers issued in Khartoum today Wednesday

Kartoum 27 /4/2011/ SUNA/ AKHBAR ALYOUM : A presidential decree dismissing Salah Goash from his position as the president advisor for national security ------ Albashir to visit Almujlad tomorrow and expectations by the return of western Kurdufan state -------- the election commission fixes a date for Darfur referendum and determines 29 constituency and the voting for the residents of the three states ------ a new vaccine for children diarrhoea next June

 

AKHIR LAHZA : Khartoum legislative council admits the existence of the Niger Gangs

 

ALSAHAFA: Almuta'afi defend the safe situation of the cultivation from the bad seeds ----- parliamentarians call for cessation of the national companies from the western Ingas road project

 

ALINTIBAHA : Almuta'afie : I will not resign and the report condems the security and the customs ----- the UN worried about kidnapping and killing its employees

 

ALAKHBAR: a student in the Unibversity of Khartoum designed an underground metro project ----- the University of Khartoum requests to have the complete administration of Khartoum Hospital ------ a new Act to guaurantee the banks deposits

 

ALAHDATH: the south constitution joins Abei to the new state ----- employment of 3000 by political decisions in Gedarif

 

ALAHDATH : Ethiopia completes the lines transfering electricity to Sudan and Djipoti ------ campaings to control the increase in sugar prices ------- the World Bank to finafnce the land road between Kenya and the south ---------- the approval of Bahari University ------ president of the work committee : we didn't demand to lift the parliament immunity

 

ALRAID : a conference for peaceful co existence between the Darfur tribes next May ----- ministry of interior made strategic plans for traffic safety

Rifts within Sudan’s ruling party topple presidential security adviser

April 27, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Internal squabbles within North Sudan’s ruling National Congress Party (NCP) have culminated in the sacking of presidential security adviser Salah Gosh, as the country’s official news agency SUNA abruptly reported at a late hour on Tuesday, citing a decree by President Al-Bashir.

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President Omar al-Bashir, Defense Minister Gen. Abdul-Rahim Mohammed Hussein, and Deputy Chairman of the National Congress Party Nafi Ali Nafi

The removal of the intelligence figure comes few days after he fell out with the country’s powerful presidential assistant and NCP’s Vice-President, Nafi Ali Nafi, amid reports that Al-Bashir himself had intervened to contain the crisis.

Nafi and Gosh exchanged public criticism this week over the dialogue conducted by the latter with certain opposition parties under the umbrella of the Presidential Security Advisory, which Gosh chairs.

The NCP’s Vice-President said in a radio interview on Friday that the dialogue led by Gosh was not sanctioned by the NCP’s leadership, stressing that his party refuses to negotiate over demands by the opposition for the formation of a national government.

In response, Gosh held a press conference on Saturday and claimed that the dialogue enjoys approval by President Al-Bashir and Vice-President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha. He further said that no one had the right to interfere in his job and that the dialogue would not stop unless president Al-Bashir issues direct orders to that effect.

Gosh went on to criticize Nafi, saying that his statement is “detrimental to the dialogue and will make opposition parties run away from it.”

Following the public display of discord, Sudan president Al-Bashir reportedly convened a meeting between the two men on Sunday, but no information has been leaked about the outcome of the meeting.

Gosh succeeded Nafi in the leadership of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) in 2002 until he was removed from his position in August 2009. He is considered the poster boy of counterterrorism cooperation between the NISS and the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

His demotion form NISS chief to a presidential security adviser followed rumors that he had drew the ire of Sudan’s army generals when he deployed his own militiamen to repulse the attack of Darfur rebel group, the Justice and Equality Movement, on the country’s capital in May 2008.

The sacking of Gosh is expected to stoke speculations of a growing power struggle between the NCP’s wing of hardliners, represented by Nafi, and those who favor a moderate approach towards opposition party.

The NCP is currently engaged with two mainstream opposition parties, the National Umma Party of Al-Sadiq al-Mahdi and the Democratic Unionist Party led by Mohamed Osman Al-Mirghani, in an effort to assuage the tension that has been dominating the domestic political arena following the secession of the oil-producing region of South Sudan in a referendum in January and the resultant worsening economic conditions.

The former presidential adviser headed also the NCP delegation in the talks with the South Sudan ruling party- SPLM over the disputed Abyei area.

Republican Decree Relieving Lt. Gen. Salah Abdalla from Position of Presidential Advisor Issued
April 26, 2011 (NAIROBI) - Sudan’s President Omer Hassan Al-Bashir has issued a decree relieving his senior security adviser Salah Gosh from his position, Sudan’s official news agency (SUNA) abruptly reported on Tuesday.
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Sudan’s Presidential Security Adviser Salah Gosh (FILE)

The sacking of Gosh comes after he publicly fell out with the presidential assistant and vice-president of Al-Bashir’s ruling National Congress Party (NCP), Nafi Ali Nafi, over the dialogue conducted with certain opposition parties by the Presidential Security Advisory, which Gosh chairs.

Salah Gosh served as a director-general of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) for several years until he was demoted to the rank of a presidential adviser for security affairs in August 2009.

 

Khartoum, April 26 (SUNA) - President of the Republic, Field Marshal Omer Al-Bashir, has issued a Republican Decree relieving Lt. Gen. (engineer) Salah Abdalla, from the position of Presidential Advisor.
Sudan president Al-Bashir intervenes to salvage dispute between his aides

April 26, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir has personally intervened to defuse an unfolding crisis between two of his close aides as officials from his ruling National Congress Party (NCP) raced to downplay the discord as caused merely by conflict of mandates.

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Sudan’s Security Presidential Adviser Salah Gosh (L), and Presidential Assistant Nafi Ali Nafi (R) during peace talks with Darfur rebels in the Libyan town of Sirte in 2007 (UNMIS)

Presidential adviser Salah Gosh, who currently chairs the Presidential Security Advisory (PSA), publicly criticized Presidential Assistant and NCP’s Vice President Nafi Ali Nafi after the latter said in a radio interview with Sudan Radio on Friday that the dialogue led by Gosh’s PSA with certain political parties was not sanctioned by the NCP’s leadership.

Nafi went on to stress that his party would not engage in a dialogue whose end result would be to weaken his party’s grip on power.

But Gosh said in a press conference a day later on Saturday that Nafi’s statement represents only him, and that his dialogue enjoys approval by President Al-Bashir and Vice-President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha.

Gosh went on to stress that no one had the right to interfere in his job as long as he is mandated by President Al-Bashir, and that the PSA dialogue would only stop at the behest of Al-Bashir.

“It is [Nafi’s statement] detrimental to the dialogue and will make opposition parties run away from it,” Gosh said.

The Gosh-Nafi crisis, as it has become to be known, comes at a time when the NCP is officially engaged in dialogue with mainstream opposition parties, namely the National Umma Party (NUP) and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), as tension continues to dominate the domestic political arena amid worsening economic conditions and a sense of loss following the secession of South Sudan in a referendum held in January.

According to a report published on Monday by the privately-owned Sudanese daily newspaper Al-Tayyar, Al-Bashir convened a meeting on Sunday evening between Nafi and Gosh.

However, the paper reported that its sources could not confirm the outcome of the meeting.

Meanwhile, other NCP officials were quick to dismiss the Nafi-Gosh crisis as a natural matter, citing conflict of mandates as its reason.

“Human genius stipulates that levels of authorities must be separated so each authority can function within the mandate given to it, this may look to others as a disagreement,” NCP’s senior member and media minister Kamal Obayd said on Monday. “This is the kind of disagreement that leads to goodness, not to misery,” he added.

The NCP’s leading female member Samia Mohamed Ahmad told reports on Monday that although her party had an independent mechanism for dialogue with opposition parties, the president also had the right to task advisory bodies with the same duty.

However, she suggested that the name PSA does not befit the role it is playing. “It would better to re-name it a political advisory rather than security advisory” Samia said.

It is to be noted that Salah Gosh said in previous statements that one of the major obstacles facing the PSA’s operation was the wrong understanding of its mandate and the perception that it stealthily represents the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS), over which he presided until he was relieved from his position in August 2009.

Peter Gatdet’s forces claim victory over South Sudan army

April 25, 2011 (MALAKAL) – The rebel forces under the command of the renegade general Peter Gatdet Yak today have claimed making more advances and inflicting heavy losses on SPLA forces of Division Four in Unity state.

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Maj. Gen. Peter Gadet

In a press statement seen by the Sudan Tribune on Sunday, the spokesperson of the South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA), Col. Bol Gatkuoth Kol, said that his forces were maintaining the control of the strategic Mankien town where is the Command and Control Center for SPLA forces of Division Four Headquarters in the state.

"In that battle, the enemy suffered heavy casualties interms of human and material losses. SPLA left behind several hundred bodies of their dead fighters," Gatkuoth said, adding that the SSLA shattered SPLA convoys of reinforcement that came from Division Three in Lakes and Warrap states.

The rebel spokesperson further claimed they destroyed two SPLA tanks and six trucks and captured nine trucks and four land cruisers 4wheel drive in good conditions. He further claimed capturing six RPGs with several launchers and large quantities of PKMs and AKMs machine guns and ammunitions when they seized Mankien on Thursday, 21 April.

Gatkuoth on the other hand refuted as “naked and unfounded” allegations by the SPLA spokesman Col. Philip Aguer, that SSLA forces also killed wounded SPLA soldiers after capturing the town.

However, the SPLA spokesman, Brig. Gen. Malaak Ayuen, on Saturday said the SPLA forces had recaptured the town from Gatdet’s forces on 22 April after fierce battle that lasted for three hours.

In a separate interview, the SSLA spokesman warned that their next target after taking control of Mayom will be Warrap and Jonglei states before launching an assault on Juba, the capital. He claimed that his forces were fighting on behalf of other political parties in the South to topple the government and come up with a constitution that will make the necessary transformations necessary.

Yesterday the SPLA spokesperson claimed that the south sudan army killed 57 rebels during Saturday’s clashes with Tanginya’s forces, in Jonglei state. He also said that three major-generals and several high ranking officers were among them.

But SPLA sources involved in the fighting against Gabriel Tanginya told Sudan Tribune that there was no Major General killed on the side of the militias. A source close to Brig. Gen. Gatwech Gai, the SPLA officer who was in charge and clashed with Tanginya forces at Kaldak, said they only found the body of a Lt. Colonel from Gabriel Tanginya’s forces after dislodging his group from the area.

He also denied that the SPLA started the fighting, explaining that as they were presenting a letter from President Salva Kiir to Gabriel Tanginya, asking him to report to the capital, somebody unknown shot a bullet in the outskirts of the area and that caused the confusion which erupted into clashes between the two forces.

He said both Gabriel Tanginya and the SPLA commander Gatwech Gai were not aware of what was happening. The SPLA commander, Gatwech, was also wounded in the clashes, the source further explained.

Dr Obeid: media ready to contribute in implementation Darfur Administrative Referendum

Khartoum, April 25 (SUNA)- Minister of information Dr. Kamal Obeid received on Monday a delegation of the National Elections Commission led by Professor Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah and some members of the commission Dr. Jalal Mohammed Ahmed, General (police) Balla Al Hardlo and, Ustaz Abu Bakr Waziri to discuss the implementation of the Administrative Referendum to determine the permanent status of Darfur

 

The Minister who was briefed by the delegation about the media campaign for the successful implementation of the administrative referendum on the status of Darfur, he praised the work of the commission that has established an excellent traditions in the conduction of the elections and the referendum in the south

 

Dr. Obeid has confirmed readiness of the national media to contribute in the implementation of the referendum and to make the experience a success, pointing out to the need to increase broadcasting hours to help with the awareness messages and to help explain the concepts pertinent to the referendum which differs from the elections and the referendum of the South Sudan

 

The minister added hat they are due to organize visits to the states of Darfur stressing the need for coordination between the elections commission, the concerned authorities and foreign media to arrange visits for the media to ensure the success of implementation of the referendum for the benefit of the homeland and citizens, especially in Darfur

 

The minister stressed the importance to activate the national and local broadcast stations, the community radio stations, and the need to expand the transmission zone to reach all the citizens of Darfur to spread the right concepts of the administrative referendum and its process

 

The Minister was briefed by the head of the delegation on the procedures for the implementation of the administrative referendum for Darfur

 

Head of the National Elections Commission professor Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah said that the commission has issued a concept paper on the nature of the referendum, how to be supervised and how to take part in, taking into consideration how it is different from the elections and the referendum of southern Sudan

 

Professor Abdullah explained that the referendum is an administrative one and is to be implemented only in Darfur, pointing out that the procedural regulations for the implementation of the referendum is conducted in accordance with the rules of the election law

 

The Chairman of the Delegation of the Elections Commission added that the process would be conducted in stages of which the registration of the elections will be updated

 

On his part, the media official in the commission Ustaz Abu Bakr Waziri has briefed the Information Minister on the Program of the media campaign, referring to the involvement of Radio Omdurman, Peace radio which showed willingness to contribute effectively in the campaign , noting in the same time for the need for a campaign in the news paper

 

On his part general (police) Abdullah Balla pointed out that the elections final record will determine who is to participate in the referendum after the publication of the electoral register for a period of about (3) weeks

 

It's to be mentioned that the National Elections Commission has formed a committee for the supervision of Darfur administrative referendum headed by professor Abdullah Ali Abdullah and the membership of Dr. Jalal Mohammed Ahmed, General ( police) Balla Abdullah and Ustaz Abu Bakr, Waziri .

North Sudan: rifts within NCP surfaced over dialogue with opposition

April 24, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Signs of discord have begun to emerge within the leadership of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in north Sudan as two senior party officials openly contradicted each other over the NCP’s dialogue with opposition parties.

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NCP’s Vice-President Nafi Ali Nafi (L) and Presidential Adviser for Security Affairs, Salah Gosh, (R)

The NCP has been engaged in dialogue with two mainstream opposition parties, the National Umma Party (NUP) of Al-Sadiq al-Mahdi and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) led by Mohamed Osman Al-Mirghani, as tension continues to dominate the domestic political arena amid calls by other opposition factions for political mobilization to topple the regime

A divergence of opinions has emerged this week when Nafi Ali Nafi, the NCP’s Vice-President, and Salah Gosh, the presidential adviser for security affairs, openly criticized and contradicted each other on whether the dialogue with opposition parties was sanctioned by the party’s leadership.

In an interview broadcast by Sudan radio on Friday, Nafi said that the dialogue conducted by Gosh with certain opposition parties “finds no acceptance” within the party because it was not approved by the NCP’s leadership.

Nafi, who is known for being a hard-liner who often makes derogatory remarks against opposition parties, asserted that his party would not negotiate over a transitional or national government to serve as a tool to weaken his party or turn it into a minority group. “If they (opposition parties) want this (a national government) they should wait until next elections,” Nafi said.

But Salah Gosh on Saturday held a press conference in which he openly faulted Nafi’s statement, saying “it is detrimental to the dialogue and will make opposition parties run away from it.”

Gosh stressed that the dialogue was authorized and sponsored by the party’s chairman, president Al-Bashir, and second Vice-President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha.

Analysts have long pointed to divisions between the NCP’s wing of hardliners and that of those who favor a conciliatory approach towards the opposition, citing it as a reason for the slow progress the dialogue has made so far.

Meanwhile, Nafi said in the same radio interview that president Al-Bashir is scheduled to meet the NUP’s leader Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi to discuss the pending points in the dialogue between the two parties. Nafi revealed that the disagreements between the two parties lie in the issue of dealing with the International Criminal Court (ICC), which indicted Al-Bashir in connection to Darfur conflict, and the issue of reducing Sudan’s current states to six regions.

Political tension in north Sudan has been exacerbated by worsening economic conditions amid rising inflation and shortage of hard currency due to the secession of South Sudan region in a referendum in January.

Oppositionists and anti-government activists blame Al-Bashir’s government for a long list of failures, including the loss of South Sudan, rising cost of living, the conflict in Darfur and restrictions on public liberties.

BREAKING NEWS: South Sudan army clashes with forces of Gabriel Tanginya in Jonglei state

April 23, 2011 (Malakal) – A separate heavy fighting has erupted this morning in Jonglei state between the South Sudan army, Sudan People’s liberation Army (SPLA), and forces loyal to Lt. General Gabriel Tanginya, military sources have told Sudan Tribune.

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Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) soldiers wait in line to vote during the referendum, at a polling station in SPLA headquarters in Juba, south Sudan January 10, 2011 (REUTERS PICTURES)

The clashes occurred in Kaldak assembly area where the forces of Gabriel Tanginya were assembled by the SPLA command during an ongoing process of reintegration. Gabriel Tanginya earlier agreed with the South Sudan leadership to reintegrate his forces into the South Sudan army.

However, eye witnesses in the area of fighting said the SPLA forces launched the surprise attack against forces of Gabriel Tanginya in the assembly area of Kaldak at around 9:00AM in the morning. It was not clear what prompted the fighting. Sources say forces of Gabriel Tanginya wanted to be reintegrated with their weapons while the SPLA wanted to disarm them first before reintegration.

General Gabriel Tanginya has in the past received weapons from Khartoum, including military vehicles mounted with artilleries. He crossed the North-south border and moved into Jonglei state with his forces in February 2011. He, however, agreed to reintegrate into the SPLA and the process of reintegration was proceeding until the fresh attacks occurred this morning.

Sources who spoke to Sudan Tribune from the area said the fighting was still going on.

More details may follow.

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