Sudanese peace talks begin

Peace talks to end violent conflict in Sudan's Darfur region have begun in the Chadian capital, Ndjamena.

    Sudan's Darfur region has been ravaged by a brutal conflict

    The talks are part of efforts to resolve a civil war that has claimed about 10,000 lives since it erupted in western Sudan in February 2003.

    Having initially started as a rebellion, prompted by the region's dire poverty, the conflict has displaced about one million people inside Sudan and forced more than 100,000 others to flee to neighbouring Chad.

    The conflict is described by the United Nations as the world's worst ongoing humanitarian disaster.

    A Sudanese government delegation and representatives of the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), who agreed on a truce on 8 April, held two hours of talks on Friday in the presence of Chadian negotiators.

    'Horrific events'

    Meanwhile in Geneva, the top UN human-rights forum adopted a relatively soft text on the alleged government-backed atrocities in Darfur - prompting the US to demand a second vote for stronger action.

    "The horrific events in Darfur demand strong action," said US delegation chief, Richard Williamson.

    Arab militias, blamed for the atrocities in Darfur, are allegedly patronised by the government in Khartoum.

    The rebels of Darfur, inhabited mainly by non-Arab Muslims, are pushing for economic development and more equitable sharing of meagre national resources.

    Sudan denies arming the militias, who have looted and burned African villages.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Double standards: 'Why aren't we all with Somalia?'

    Double standards: 'Why aren't we all with Somalia?'

    More than 300 people died in Somalia but some are asking why there was less news coverage and sympathy on social media.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Kobe Steel: A scandal made in Japan

    Kobe Steel: A scandal made in Japan

    Japan's third-largest steelmaker has admitted it faked data on parts used in cars, planes and trains.