Sudan signs pact with Darfur group

Main rebel groups like JEM stay away from signing ceremony amid questions on whether the agreement will last.

    The Sudanese government and a Darfur rebel group, the Liberation and Justice Movement, have signed a peace accord in the Qatari capital Doha, in the absence of key rebel factions.

    Those that boycotted Thursday's ceremony include the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and Sudan Liberation Army (SLM).

    Omar al-Bashir, Sudan's President, and leaders of Chad, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Eritrea and Qatar attended the signing of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur on Thursday.

    The accord follows talks sponsored by the African Union, the United Nations and Arab League.

    Ahmed Tabout Lissan, of the Justice and Equality Movement, told Al Jazeera his group did not sign the peace accord because "we were not given reasonable time to sit with the Sudanese government to finalise the core isues relationg to this conflict".

    He cited the issues as power wealth sharing and security arrangements.

    Al Jazeera's Hazem Sika, reporting from the talks, said it is not clear how the peace accord will be implemented as "other rebel groups that have been involved in these talks have said they will not take part".

    Previous talks on Darfur have been held in Doha with little success at resolving the conflict, which began in 2003.

    Al-Bashir has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Darfur but he denies the charges.

    In March 2010 the Sudanese government signed a three-month ceasefire agreement with the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) in  Doha, but the JEM  stayed away.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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