Sudan army: Negotiating does not mean stopping fighting
Jeddah talks set to resume Thursday, October 26
Ahead of the resumption of negotiations, the Sudan Armed Forces issued a statement tampering expectations for a ceasefire and saying that they will keep fighting.
“Resuming negotiations does not mean stopping the battle for national dignity. Eliminating and defeating the rebels is the goal of the Sudanese people and the Sudan Armed Forces,” said the statement issued by the army’s official spokesman.
In other words, there is no ceasefire.
The statement also characterized the talks as humanitarian in nature, focused on implementing the former Jeddah Declaration of humanitarian principles.
However, the statement left open the possibility that the talks eventually could yield significant results, affirming, “negotiation is one of the means that might end the war.”
The United States of America and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are co-facilitating the talks. The two governments brokered multiple ceasefires in April, May, and June, but suspended the talks June 21 after multiple flagrant violations of the ceasefires.
“Both sides privately indicated that they are ready to resume talks,” said a U.S. official, as quoted by Reuters. Similarly, an unnamed State Department official quoted by Voice of America said, “The new round will focus on ensuring unhindered humanitarian access, achieving cease-fires, and other confidence-building measures to create conditions for the safe delivery of humanitarian assistance.”
The official emphasized that Thursday's talks will not tackle political matters.
For their part, the RSF confirmed their participation too, saying their delegates arrived in Jeddah today. In a statement, the RSF spokesperson insulted the SAF delegation, questioning whether they are really representing the army or rather the former deposed National Congress Party:
“We hope that the delegation of the other party has come to Jeddah united and independent in its opinion from the dictates of the National Congress Party. We also hope that it has the necessary authorization to speak on behalf of the Armed Forces and not on the agenda of the remnants (of the former regime), in order to discuss the issues of our people who aspire to build a new state on the guidance of democracy, sustainable peace and equality.”
Seeking to equate the army leadership with the deposed former Bashir regime is a persistent part of RSF propaganda, even though the RSF itself was also created by the Bashir regime and served it loyally for many years.
The statement also stressed that RSF have the upper hand militarily, saying, ”The heroes of our forces impose full control in the field… The remnants and their aides do not and will not have the right to dictate conditions.”