I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the A3+1, namely, Kenya, Niger, Tunisia, and Saint Vincent, and the Grenadines.
We are grateful to the Secretary-General for his report highlighting the activities of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) (S/2021/766) and recent developments in the country.
We also thank Special Representative and head of UNITAMS, Mr. Volker Perthes, for his comprehensive briefing, Ms. Hala Alkarib, Regional director of SIHA, and welcome the participation of the representative of Sudan in today’s meeting.
The A3+1 welcomes the recent progress made by the Government of Sudan to advance the political transition track, despite acute economic and humanitarian challenges.
While commending the commitment and efforts made by the Sudanese authorities to implement the Juba Peace Agreement, in particular, the formation of the Joint High Military Committee for Security Arrangements, the Darfur Permanent Ceasefire Committee, and related sectoral and area committees, we reiterate our call to all signatories to continue to implement the JPA key provisions, in order to consolidate the gains made thus far.
We also emphasize that the establishment of the remaining key transitional institutions is critical for advancing an inclusive and sustainable political transition.
Peace in Sudan will not be complete until all conflicts come to an end. The A3+1 remain concerned by the sporadic intercommunal violence, as well as clashes between the Government forces and certain non-signatory armed groups. These incidents attest to the need for continued efforts to address the root causes of the conflicts.
The A3+1 welcomes the progress made in the talks between the transitional government and the SPLM-N Abdelaziz al-Hilu faction and urges both parties to build on this initial progress and advance a constructive framework for addressing their remaining differences. We commend UNITAMS for its contribution to facilitating these talks as part of its efforts to support the peace process and implementation of the JPA.
The A3+1 also urges those who have not yet joined the peace process to do so without delay to give a chance to sustainable and inclusive peace in Sudan.
The A3+1 welcomes the Sudanese Government’s commitment and efforts to provide full protection to civilians, through the implementation of the National Plan for the Protection of Civilians as well as the promotion of dialogue and reconciliation among the different ethnic communities.
We welcome Sudan’s ratification and the entry into force on September 9th of the 2006 U.N. Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance and the 1984 Convention Against Torture and Inhuman Punishment.
We also commend the steps taken by the transitional Government to improve the child protection legislation including the Cabinet’s decision that Sudan would withdraw its reservations to the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child related to child marriage, the right of married pregnant girls to education and child rights to privacy.
The peace process in Sudan faces serious challenges, particularly the lack of necessary financial and technical resources needed for the implementation of the JPA. In this regard, the A3+1 welcome the establishment of the “Sudan peace fund”. While thanking Germany, Switzerland, and the UK for their contributions, we call on all Sudan’s partners to support this initiative and facilitate its effective, and efficient operationalization.
We encourage all parties to ensure gender equality in decision-making structures and call international partners to support Sudan to fulfill its national WPS agenda. We commend in this regard the support provided by UNITAMS to the Sudanese authorities to strengthen women’s participation and inclusion in the peace process in cooperation with UN Women and UNDP
On the economic front, the A3+1 commend the efforts of the Sudanese authorities including stringent economic reforms undertaken to pave the way for the country to begin receiving debt relief under the enhanced Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative, despite the difficulties related to the COVID-19 and to the regional context.
The A3+1 encourages the transitional government to continue its crucial economic reforms with continued international support to ease the heavy debt burden inherited from the past and pave the way to a prosperous future for all Sudanese.
The already dire humanitarian situation in Sudan has been further aggravated by the economic crisis, food insecurity, COVID-19, the adverse effects of climate change, intercommunal violence, and prolonged displacement of populations, as well as the recent refugee crisis in eastern areas and recent heavy rains.
In this regard, we commend the Sudanese for hosting these refugees and sharing resources with them. This difficult situation, which affects over 13 million people, calls on us to show responsibility and solidarity with Sudan, with a view to mitigating the impact of the humanitarian situation on the current peace-building dynamics in the country.
The A3+1 would like to commend the progress made in the establishment of UNITAMS and welcome in this regard the signature on 4th July of the status of the mission agreement.
We commend UNITAMS for the various support and training activities it is undertaking within its mandate to assist the political transition, facilitate the implementation of the JPA, as well as to support the Sudanese-led peacebuilding, protection of civilians, and rule of law efforts.
We call on UNITAMS to continue working closely with the transitional authorities to facilitate the expeditious implementation of the reform agenda and to enhance its assistance in the mobilization of economic and development assistance, and in the coordination of humanitarian and peacebuilding support.
In conclusion Madam President,
The A3+1 commended Sudan for the significant advances in its transition despite many challenges. We hope that the close cooperation with UNITAMS and the country team, and strong support from the international community behind a unified Security Council will help the country to address these challenges so that it can complete its historic transition and fulfill the Sudanese people’s aspirations to achieve democracy, peace, and prosperity.