South Sudan's Minister of Foreign Affairs Ramadan Abdalla Goc (courtesy photo)

‘No divergence’ in Sudan aid delivery talks: mediator

A South Sudanese official said no major differences exist between Sudan’s military government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-North) in negotiations for aid delivery.

A South Sudanese official said no major differences exist between Sudan’s military government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-North) in negotiations for aid delivery.

On Thursday, the Sudan Transitional Sovereign Council led by Gen. Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan commenced talks with the rebel group Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) in South Sudan to open humanitarian corridors amid ongoing conflict.

 The SPLM-North rebel group led by Abdelaziz al-Hilu controls parts of South Kordofan and Blue Nile states.

In October 2020, the SPLM-North refused to sign the peace deal between the Sudanese government and the opposition groups in Juba, demanding a democratic and secular state.

“There is no divergence in positions in the negotiations between both sides because the talks are focused on humanitarian issues. Major differences often happen when talks are on political issues. So, there are no complexities because they are discussing humanitarian issues,” Ramadan Abdallah Goc, secretary general of the mediation team, told reporters on Saturday. 

Goc, who also serves as South Sudan’s foreign minister, underscored the active role of South Sudan in the humanitarian negotiations. He confirmed that both sides have exchanged written positions on the issues and that the talks will resume on Monday. “As the government of South Sudan, we are committed to facilitating and ensuring that aid assistance reaches the people in need during these difficult times,” he emphasized.

The South Sudanese minister added, “There is a desire internationally to assist the conflict-affected people in Sudan, but there is a need to open humanitarian corridors for aid delivery and ensure the protection of aid workers.”

“Our hope is that the parties will reach an agreement that allows humanitarian assistance to reach the people in need in Sudan. The ongoing discussions between the two parties are a testament to their commitment to finding ways to deliver aid,” he concluded.