PRESS RELEASE OF SUDAN UNION OF THE MARGINALISED MAJORITY
31st August 2003
No doubt the current civil war in the Sudan is a direct and inevitable result of injustice, oppression and suffering which faced the Sudanese citizen in South Sudan, Kordofan (especially Nuba Mountains), South Blue Nile, Eastern Sudan and Darfur for too long. We are all acutely aware that the civil war has raged for over twenty years, resuling, so far, in the death of over 3 million people and displacement of more than 4.5 million others in these areas. Moreover, Darfur is still witnessing gross human rights abuses which caused death, displacement, and hunger to hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people and many others are facing the real threat of genocide posed by the Khartoum regime. It is arguably the biggest disaster ever to hit the Sudan during this century.
This human tragedy, which we are bearing witness to today in our beloved country, cannot be tolerated by any Sudanese citizen. For this reason, the Sudan Union of the Marginalised Majority (SUMM) calls upon all the parties concerned to take drastic measures to change the current situation in the Sudan. The Union wishes to contribute to this national mission. Therefore, all representatives of the marginalised sections of the Sudanese people, who have signed below, agreed the following resolutions:
1. We call upon the United Nations to intervene urgently to put an end to the current gross human rights abuses in Darfur and ensure the Government of the Sudan respects its obligations under the international law and protects citizens.
2. We call for Darfur to be included to the list of areas under the supervision of the international human rights monitoring committee which was appointed in accordance with the recommendations of the IGAD-mediated peace initiative.
3. We call upon the United Nations to appoint an independent international commission to investigate allegations of gross human rights abuses in Darfur, Kordofan (especially Nuba Mountains), South Sudan, South Blue Nile, East Sudan and other marginalised areas and bring the criminals to a legitimate court of justice.
4. We call upon the United Nations to bring pressure to bear on the Government of the Sudan to permit international humanitarian organisations to supply humanitarian aid to the destitute citizens in Darfur.
5. We call upon the United Nations and the international community to condemn the Khartoum government for recrurrently committing human rights abuses in the marginalised areas generally and Darfur in particular.
6. We call upon the United Nations to impose a complete arms embargo on the ruling regime in the Sudan We call upon the United Nations toto ensure non-proliferation of arms to avoid further escalation of the conflict in Darfur.
7. We call upon the United Nations to bring pressure to bear on the Government of the Sudan to ensure she negotiates peace with Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), and any other parties to the conflict in the Sudan, in good faith and recognise the legitimacy of the demands of the armed and popular opposition in Darfur with the view to achieve a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the country.
8. We call upon all Sudanese people, political forces and civil society institutions to participate in establishing the New Sudan; a Sudan which quarantees freedom, justice and equality for all citizens; a Sudan divorced from racism, tribalism, sectarianism and all kinds and forms of discrimination that let to marginalisation of the vast majority of Sudanese citiens.
9. We affirm our support to the IGAD-mediated peace initiative as a peaceful means for achieving a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the Sudan. We welcome the Machakos Protocol and believe it is a step towards peace. We urge both the Government of the Sudan and Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) to continue their negotiations on the basis of the Nakuru Framework and ensure participation of all Sudanese political forces in the peace process in order to reach a peaceful settlement to the conflict.
10. We support the right of self-determination as a legitimate right of the marginalised people of South Sudan, as a mechanism for conflict resolution and as a basis for voluntary unity in the Sudan.
11. We believe the current armed forces need to be maintained as independent entities from the forces of the Government of the Sudan during the interim period as a guarantee to peace and stability in the Sudan.
12. We call for formation of a broad-based interim national government, according to a methodology to be agreed hereafter, in which all political forces and civil society institutions play a role.
13. We call for full participation of the Sudanese people, all the political forces and civil society institutions in drafting the interim national constitution of the Sudan.
14. We call for fair general elections to be conducted in the Sudan in accordance with an election law, which shall be agreed by all the parties concerned during the interim period, and to be monitored by a team of international observers in order to ensure a peaceful transition from a one-party rule to multi-party democracy.
15. We call upon all the political forces and civil society institutions to adopt the principle of a national consensus as the basis for legislation and formulation of policies of the Sudan during the interim period.
16. We call for Khartoum to be the national capital city ensuring it embraces and caters for the cultural, ethnic and religious diversity of the Sudanese people.
17. We call for restructuring of the state power base to ensure we avoid domination of power and resources by the minority and marginalisation of the majority and recurrence of the injustices and inequalities which let to the erruption of the civil war in the Sudan.
18. We call for the regime's oppressive security organs to be abolished and ensure neutrality of their substitues so that they are not mere tools exploited by various forces and/or interest groups for their own benefit.
19. We call upon all the political forces and civil society institutions to adopt decentralisation as an appropriate system of governance in the Sudan during the interim period that will guarantee the right of the regions to adminster their own afairs.
20. We call for adoption of a balanced foreign policy which serves all the interests of the Sudan and promotes peace, stability and prosperity in the country on the one hand and peace and security in all parts of the world on the other.
21. We confirm our commitment to work jointly to increase the chances of a just peace and the transition to a multi-party democratic system as a means for power sharing in the Sudan.
22. We are committed to entrenching and upholding human rights and encouraging a human rights culture in the Sudan and call for release of all political detainees including Dr Hassan al-Turabi.
We must exert maximum efforts to put an end to the tragedy faced by the Sudanese people so that each Sudanese citizen can afford to live in their country feeling proud and dignified. For this reason, we call upon all Sudanese people to support the press release of Sudon Union of the Marginalised Majority in our honest believe that it is a means for establishing a Sudan which quarantees freedom, justice and equality for all.
Dr Khalil Ibrahim Mohammed
Provisional General Secretary