U.S. accuses Bashir of trying to undermine South Sudan

Posted: February 29, 2012 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Junub Sudan
Tags: , , , , ,

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Earlier this month, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir said on national television that Sudan is closer to war than peace with the breakaway state of South Sudan. (Reuters)

Earlier this month, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir said on national television that Sudan is closer to war than peace with the breakaway state of South Sudan. (Reuters)

By AFP
WASHINGTON

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday accused Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir of trying to undermine newly independent South Sudan, adding Washington would consider increasing pressure on Bashir to reverse course.

Clinton told U.S. lawmakers that “what we’ve got with Bashir is a very determined effort to try to undo the results of the comprehensive peace agreement,” which led to the creation last July of a separate state in South Sudan.

She recalled “the United States played a very important role in negotiating that agreement,” a 2005 deal that ended more than two decades of war between the Islamist-led government in Khartoum and rebels representing the mainly Christian and animist south.

“The people of South Sudan voted for independence and ever since, despite Bashir going to Salva Kiir’s inauguration, there has been a steady effort to undermine this new state,” Clinton said, referring to the new southern president.

“We will certainly look at trying to up the pressure on Khartoum and on Bashir personally,” the chief U.S. diplomat told a House of Representatives committee.

On Feb. 3, Bashir said on national television that Sudan is closer to war than peace with the breakaway state of South Sudan, with a dispute over oil and other issues stoking tensions.

Bashir spoke after Kiir warned that renewed conflict could erupt if oil negotiations with Khartoum do not include a deal on other key issues, including the contested Abyei region.

Tensions have also been raised by the still undemarcated border, parts of which cut through oilfields, as well as mutual allegations that each side backs rebel forces against the other.

“We also believe there has to be an agreement to finish out the comprehensive peace agreement and try to finalize all of the border issues, the oil issues, and that’s going to be very difficult, too,” Clinton said.

“We support the process that the African Union is running in Addis Ababa but it doesn’t seem to be making a lot of progress yet,” she said.

http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/02/29/197822.html

Clinton: Bashir trying to scuttle Sudan peace deal

By MATTHEW LEE
Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday accused Sudan’s leader of trying to scuttle a historic peace deal that created the world’s newest country last year.

Clinton told a House panel that Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s regime in Khartoum is actively trying to undermine the government of South Sudan and that the Obama administration will look at new ways to build pressure on them to stop. Her comments came in response to a lawmaker’s question about reported bombing attacks on refugees fleeing violence in the south and firefights between southern and northern troops.

“I think that what we’ve got with Bashir is a very determined effort to try to undo the results of the comprehensive peace agreement,” Clinton said.

South Sudan was created last year after southern Sudanese voted to secede from Sudan in a referendum required by a 2005 peace agreement that ended the country’s long-running civil war. Clinton noted that the people of the South had voted overwhelmingly for independence and lamented that Bashir, after initially embracing the results and attending the inauguration of South Sudan’s president, had been involved in “a steady effort to undermine this new state.

“We will certainly look at trying to up the pressure on Khartoum and on Bashir personally,” she said.

Earlier this month, South Sudan accused Sudan of bombing a border town, violating a non-aggression agreement between the two nations just hours after it was signed.

That agreement was inked during talks to resolve outstanding provisions of the 2005 peace deal, including the division of the two nations’ once-unified oil industry. South Sudan inherited nearly three quarters of Sudan’s oil production but its oil must still exported through pipelines through Sudan.

The two countries have been unable to agree on the transport fees the south should pay. In lieu of an agreement, Sudan declared it would take a percentage of the South’s oil as in-kind payments prompting the South to accuse Khartoum of stealing its oil and shut down all production in its oil fields, depriving Khartoum of a critical source of income.

The two countries are also far apart on other issues such as the demarcation of the north-south border and the status of the disputed Abyei region.

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