(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) The Members of the Troika welcomed Tuesday Sudan's ruling National Congress Party's (NCP) "stated intent" to undertake a process of national dialogue in Sudan.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende and Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague said in a joint statement "we have long shared the view of many Sudanese that a sustainable peace and a prosperous Sudan can only be achieved through a fundamental review, and reform, of national governance systems that concentrate power at the center and marginalize the regions." "To this end, we are encouraged by the leadership's stated intent to confront questions regarding the country's ongoing conflicts, poverty, governance, political freedoms, and national identity," the statement added.
It stressed "we encourage Sudan's leaders to work in close coordination with the AU High-level Implementation Panel, led by President Mbeki, to ensure that those goals are met." "We encourage the political leadership to ensure the time and space necessary to deliver on their promise of a genuine, holistic, and truly inclusive dialogue that will include the armed and unarmed opposition, as well as civil society," it continued.
Meanwhile, the joint statement stressed that "unfortunately, the Government of Sudan has taken actions of late that have enabled some to raise doubts about the sincerity of this initiative." It indicated that "most notably, the Government continues to wage a war and target civilians in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile and bears primary responsibility for intensifying the conflict in Darfur, where some 300,000 have been displaced this year." "Tangible steps by all parties to bring these conflicts to an end are critical now to build popular confidence in the process. Similarly, the Government's restriction and increased repression of individual, political, and press freedoms limits the space necessary for a successful national dialogue; such a process will demand both goodwill and a conducive environment if it is to enjoy broad legitimacy," it affirmed.
"We will continue to follow developments closely and stand ready to work with those who seek to advance meaningful reforms," it concluded.