Editorial: AUHIP Parallel Mediation
It seems that the AU mediation is taking two parallel courses in its dealing with the conflict between Sudan and South Sudan.
The AU mediation is administrating the internationally focused talks over the relation between Sudan and South Sudan.
At the same time the outgoing chairman of the AU commission, Jean Ping, noted in a press release that government and SPLM-N representatives will meet in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa under the auspices of the AU High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) led by former South African President Thabo Mbeki to discuss provision of humanitarian assistance to the conflict-affected population in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
This meeting would be the first between the two parties since an agreement they negotiated and signed in Addis Ababa in June last year to address the conflict in the two states was rejected by the Sudanese government.
The planned meeting also follows Khartoum’s agreement on 27 June, after months of stalling and concomitant external pressure, to a proposal put forward by the AU, UN and the Arab League on the access to provide humanitarian assistance in the two states. The SPLM-N accepted the proposal when it was first made in February.
Notwithstanding that the talks will concentrate on the humanitarian situation, but still the efforts are mainly to stop the armed conflict in the Blue Nile and South Kordofan States, besides protecting the citizens by providing them with the urgent humanitarian assistance.
We believe that the AUHIP under the chairmanship of Thabo Mbeki was right when it put this issue as an urgent item considering that the agreement over it is likely and easier after which they can shift to the war and peace issue in the area.
However, the issue of humanitarian assistance is an urgent issue considering the remaining days for the UNSC deadline.
It is high time for both sides to help the AUHIP in its noble mission considering that any breakthrough in the crisis of the two states will make it easy to shift to the proposed political talks to resolve the war and peace issue in the Blue Nile and South Kordofan States.
By Sudan Vision, 24/07/2012