New rounds of talks over fate of Darfur
A new round of peace negotiations was launched on Tuesday between the Sudanese government and rebels from Darfur. The talks, held in the Nigerian capital of Abuja, came after six failed rounds of peace talks under the guidance of the 53-member African Union.
Salim Ahmed Salim, chief mediator of the African Union, warned that the parties continued to drag the peace talks after over the course of a year, according to Xinhuanet, further adding to people's suffering.
" The suffering has to stop," Salim said, "The moment of truth for all Sudanese, indeed, gathered in this room has arrived."
Salim stressed that there was no military solution to the conflict, and that to deny the fact was to prolong the suffering of the people of Darfur, especially innocent women and children.
The international community still hopes that the current round of talks will produce results between the parties, both accused of breaking cease-fire agreements.
Olusegun Obasanjo, Nigeria's President and also chairman of the African Union, told participants, "This is the last time to receive you for this particular purpose and we fervently hope that this round will be most decisive as the final round."
The negotiations, sponsored by the African Union, were originally scheduled to be held on November 21, but were postponed due to leadership rifts among rebel groups in Darfur.