Reception for the leader of the movement JEM, dr. Ibrahim Mohamed Khalil
Ljubljana, 05/31/2006 | press release, statement
The leader of the movement JEM, dr. Ibrahim Mohamed Khalil arrived in Slovenia today. The president of the Republic of Slovenia dr. Janez Drnovšek continued the talks with him that already began yesterday. Before meeting with dr. Khalil, the President met with the leader of the negotiators of the Justice and equality movement – JEM Ahmed Tugod Lissan, members of the leadership of this movement Abdullah Osman El-Tom and the leader of the all-Sudanese Democratic union and the former governor of Darfur, Ahmed I. Diraigo.
After today's meeting, dr. Drnovšek made the following statement to the press:
"I would like to extend my greetings to all of you. I have just concluded the second part of today's talks with dr. Ibrahim Khalil and his closest colleagues. They are the leaders of the Justice and equality movement. It is one of the groups that have been striving to improve the situation for the people in Darfur. They are one of the two groups that did not accept the agreement on May 5th in Abuja. After some brief prolongations, the international community decided on the deadline for this agreement to be signed by midnight by all the parties including the two groups that have not signed it so far. In the course of today's talks, we thoroughly studied the situation attempting to find the way out. It would be very desirable for all the parties in dispute in Darfur to come to a common agreement. This would serve as the basis for stability and peace in the future. Therefore the humanitarian situation could improve and things would generally settle down. At this moment we have not yet come to some clear solution, nevertheless the deadline has not expired yet. We are therefore trying to find some formula. Our role, the role of Slovenia and my personal role is to try provide some assistance in order to reach a solution that would be satisfactory for the inhabitants of Darfur and stop the humanitarian catastrophe. As you know we already some months ago came up with peace initiative also in the international community. I do believe that we contributed to the fact that the international community again concentrated on Darfur. We also initiated a humanitarian action and I believe Slovenia was been quite successful with it. Until this day, our humanitarian organizations gathered 190 million Slovenian tollars. Together with a number of prominent international people we also addressed our appeal at the international community to find a solution for this humanitarian catastrophe. Therefore it is our wish, of course, for the political peace process to complete successfully and that security agreements would be set up in order to ensure peaceful life of the people and the work of humanitarian organizations. There is fear on the other hand that humanitarian catastrophe may develop further into much greater dimensions. Especially if the solution is not reached before the rainy season begins. International humanitarian organizations have seriously been warning of the critical situation at this moment."
After dr. Khalil's statement dr. Drnovšek added:
"As for the content I agree in many ways with Dr. Ibrahim Khalil and his movement. This agreement could have been better, the political status of Darfur could have been more clear and more autonomous, the share of resources provided within the Sudanese federation should have been greater not to have such marginalization as in the past. Nevertheless it is a fact that the international community endorsed this agreement and it is a fact that the government and one of the rebel groups accepted it. The international community set the deadline for the other two groups to accept the agreement by midnight otherwise they are threatened with sanctions. In the light of this reality, in which I also held talks with dr. Ibrahim Khalil and his colleagues I had to advise them to try and find the way for their movement not to be isolated from the international community and also as a political factor in Sudan. They were advised to study the option of accepting the agreement in spite of its deficiencies and state that with their political activities they will attempt to find such solutions that would be better than the ones offered by the agreement. If the other parties to this agreement and the international community are willing to prolong the deadline and keep looking for a solution Slovenia is willing to provide further assistance. We definitely wish for the solution to be found. If the deadline is not prolonged, dr. Ibrahim Khalil and his colleagues are recommended to consider the situation and try remain in the game as political players in the open field also with the international support and in the continuation try to reach their goals step by step even though this has not been possible so far to such extent as they desired. At this moment this is what can be said. The deadline has not expired yet and some elements remain open. It is also unclear how the other group will decide, the group of dr. Abdel Wahed that has not supported the agreement either. It is of course not clear what the international community will do at midnight. It is probably waiting for the facts and the decisions taken by both groups. That is all I can add."