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Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Divisions Expose the True Face of SPLM-N

Khartoum - The latest division within rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement – North (SPLM-N) have exposed rifts among the three leaders of the movement – Agar, Arman and Al-Hillu, who have always claimed to be in unity. The differences manifested in the recent resignation by deputy  chairman of the movement Abdel-Aziz Al-Hilu from his post as well as the decision to withdraw confidence from Yassir Arman in addition to the dissolving of the movement's negotiation team, replaced by a new one, and the withdrawal of the files regarding foreign relations and political alliances. These divisions and development resulted in the dissolving the council for the liberations of Nuba mountains to elect a new one.

New body

Many Nuba leaders see what is happening in SPLM-N these days as a manifestation of the state of imbalance the movement is going through and accumulated differences, which resulted in confusing decisions. Some leaders claim to be mandated in the name of South Kordofan but the reality is opposite because not all the people of South Kordofan are in support of SPLM-N so it is illogical to speak of their fate on their behalf. They pointed out that the leaders of the movement did not have the right to make decision regarding the fate region, describing the movements acts as mere bargaining chips that will have no impact on negotiations, meaning the emergence of a new body, adding that SPLM-N have become a mere nominal body lacking any content and significance, which regionalizing issues as if it had no national concerns. 
Hamad Al-Neel Hassaballah Suleiman, SPLM-N – Change Group's secretary general attributed the divisions to old differences over objectives by the leaders of the movement, lack of confidence among military commanders, and personal interests. He claimed that Mr. Al-Hilu quit the movement to distance himself from mistakes and to appear as a "hero", while it is in Yassir Arman's interest to prolong the war and obstruct negotiations.

The sons of Nuba abroad have warned of dire conditions in Blue Nile and South Kordofan due to lacking confidence within SPLM-N, differences they termed as "crucial" and resulting from a lack of a clear vision, institutionalism and legal reference, the characteristic of the movement since 2013, which renders the movement's tripartite leadership "illegitimate" 
A Source revealed that SPLM-N have opened support line with Egypt, Iran and Israel, indicating that Egypt will supply the movement with antiaircraft guns, in addition to support by some organizations such as SMART, Nuba Development, Action, AbKuk and FRI. The source expected SPLM-N to escalate its provocative operations to compel the government's military response as a pretext to obstruct the lifting of sanctions, accusing the movement of cattle raiding after losing the US logistic support.  According to the sources SPLM-N is currently dependent on Nuba Mountain Bank to finance its operations.  
The source warned the inhabitants of the region to be cautious, expecting catastrophic conditions worse than ever before. As a result of the recent developments within the SPLM-N, Yassir Arman has been relieved of sweeping powers in favor of Nuba and Blue Nile sons, who take care of theirs affairs and lead negotiations with the government.

South Sudan

According to reports, South Sudan government has called for an extraordinary conference for SPLM-N for Blue Nile and South Kordofan separately. Al-Hilu arrived Juba to brief Salva Kiir on latest development, but South Sudan President demanded Al-Hilu return, reverse his resignation and calm the situation.  Salva Kiir was reportedly set to meet with SPLM-N leaders to restore affairs through the conference as the rebel SPLM-N seems to be in verge of collapse.
Sources believe that Mr. Yassir Arman to be a scapegoat for restoring unity within the movement as many voiced for peace rather than staying the course of fighting, despite the fact the SPLM-N core strategy is to prolong the war in the two areas evident in Mr. Hilu's recent call for taking up arms against the government as an effective tool for resolving issues.
Afaf Tawur, a leading figure in South Kordofan, earlier called upon the sons of the regions to separate their  issue from Blue Nile to see that where on earth Malik Agar would go, a reference to the sons of the Nuba mountains constitute the backbone of the movement and support Malik Agar gains from Nuba.
Tribal Chief Ibrahim Tiya said the sons of the regions are opposed to the tripartite leadership of SPLM-N (Agar, Hilu and Arman), arguing that the three leaders no longer fight for the legitimate demands of the region but are seeking their personal vested conflicting interests. Tiya accused the SPLM-N leaders of serving foreign agenda at the expense supreme national interests, stability and security and peace in the two areas; in addition to misusing the sons of the regions and the locals' need in aid of their interests. He further accused SPLM-N of involvement in human trafficking operations.
The silent majority

A political group in South Kordofan disclosed that they have received reports about conditions the repercussions of conflict within the SPLM-N on the state; in addition the future of peace in the region. They reported that the head of AU High Implementation Panel (AUHIP) Thabo Mbeki in his recent visit to Khartoum had received memos from stakeholders and the silent majority, local leaders and figures, in which they said that the SPLM-N does not represent the components and the people of South Kordofan, as manifested in the internal divisions in the leadership of movement.