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UN’s New Mediatory Process in Sudan Backed by Saudi Arabia

Jan 12, 2022

Staff Writer

The United Nations on Monday started a mediation process, which is heavily backed by Saudi Arabia and supported by the Sudanese military, according to Special Envoy Volker Perthes. “The US, the Saudis, and a couple of others are very heavily involved, they helped in developing some ideas,” Perthes argued, insisting that no hard deadlines would be imposed on the negotiations, which are not yet fully endorsed by the main political and activist movements in the country.

Welcomed by the US and Saudi Arabia, these negotiations are likely to try to divide civilians, with parties being invited to provide different proposals in an indirect negotiations process, which would theoretically supposedly lead to the finding of commonalities. These negotiations come with no real consequences being instituted on the Sudanese military for the October coup, nor in its involvement in the deaths of around 60 civilians; the Sovereignty Council, controlled by the military, has thus welcomed the UN’s process.

Sudan has been in turmoil since October, when the military removed Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok. Hamdok was reinstated in November, but recently resigned, having failed to receive the buy-in from civilian groups.

Around 60 civilians have been killed as a result of the military’s heavy-handed crackdown on protests following the October 25 coup, with internet and phonelines being regularly shutdown by the military, in a thus far unsuccessful attempt to put an end to the protests.

While the US and EU have been more critical of the coup, countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt have tried to dampen criticism of the Sudanese military, and remain financial backers of the coup.

 

 

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