Sudan officials ‘to meet Darfur rebels in Paris’

21st June 2004, Comments 0 comments

KHARTOUM, June 21 (AFP) - A Sudanese government delegation and rebels from the western Darfur region will meet in Paris Tuesday in a bid to end a 16-month conflict that has caused a humanitarian crisis prompting growing international concern, a newspaper reported Monday.

KHARTOUM, June 21 (AFP) - A Sudanese government delegation and rebels from the western Darfur region will meet in Paris Tuesday in a bid to end a 16-month conflict that has caused a humanitarian crisis prompting growing international concern, a newspaper reported Monday.

The official Al Anbaa daily said State Humanitarian Affairs Minister Mohamed Yusuf Abdallah would fly to Paris on Monday at the head of the high-level government delegation for talks with the Justice and Equality Movement and other factions carrying arms against the government in Darfur.

The paper quoted Abdallah as saying the talks would start on Tuesday with an opening session and as of Wednesday the two sides would go into five days of working sessions to discuss the Darfur issue.

He said the French foreign ministry would play a role in the negotiations which he appeared optimistc would succeed, citing the agreement by the other side to sit down for the talks as a sign to the success.

The report coincided with a visit by France's deputy foreign minister Renaud Muselier, who arrived Monday in Geineina, capital of West Darfur state and began talks with state governor Suleiman Abdallah Adam.

Muselier was scheduled to visit two of the 17 camps holding people displaced by the conflict.

Arab militias and government troops have been blamed for a wave of killings of indigenous minority groups in Darfur since rebels rose up in February 2003, accusing Khartoum of discrimination and neglect.

Clashes between the Sudanese army and the two rebel groups - the Sudan Liberation Movement and the Movement for Justice and Equality - have killed at least 10,000 people and forced more than a million from their homes, according to UN estimates.

Muselier is also to visit El-Fasher, capital of North Darfur state, where he will meet the state governor and visit the headquarters of an African Union observer force supervising a ceasefire signed on April 8.


© AFP


Subject: French news

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