Museveni, AU security council discuss Sudanese peace initiatives, call for ceasefire

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Museveni, AU security council discuss Sudanese peace initiatives, call for ceasefire
President Museveni Courtesy Photo

The African Union's (AU) Peace and Security Council (PSC) has demanded an immediate ceasefire in Sudan and the prioritisation of humanitarian aid.

The AU convened its 1218th meeting at the level of Heads of State and Government on June 21, 2024, in Addis Ababa.

The session, chaired by President Museveni, included contributions from key international figures such as Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the AU Commission, and representatives from the United Nations and the League of Arab States.

The AU's stance was unequivocal: the ongoing conflict between the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) must end immediately.

“The humanitarian situation in Sudan is catastrophic, with indiscriminate killings and destruction of essential infrastructure.The international community must unite to support a peaceful resolution.”

The communiqué underscored several critical points. Firstly, it condemned the war's adverse impact on civilians, highlighting violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. The PSC demanded that both RSF and SAF cease hostilities immediately and engage in dialogue.

President Museveni attributed the war in Sudan to the ideological mistakes of its leaders.

"For 70 years, our neighboring country has been in near-continuous war due to identity politics Africans vs. Arabs, Muslims vs. Christians," he said.

"This was the original problem, similar to issues we've faced in Uganda. Politics of identity over the people's interests led to prolonged conflict."

He highlighted two other critical mistakes: the use of force over dialogue and arming undisciplined individuals with flawed ideologies.

"Such practices lead to catastrophes affecting entire populations, indicating mismanagement of the conflict," he noted.

Museveni praised the Security Council and other members for urging Sudanese factions to cease fighting, embrace dialogue, and return control to the Sudanese people through democratic elections.

AU Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat emphasized the importance of ensuring a ceasefire in Sudan.

"The AU is committed to facilitating the peace process and ensuring national reconciliation, which is vital for protecting human rights and achieving democratic transition," he said, commending Museveni's efforts in the peace process.

IGAD Executive Secretary, Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, stressed the need for coordinated peace efforts, prioritizing the suffering Sudanese people.

"Despite the tragic year of war, there is still hope for a peaceful resolution," he said.

Dr. Mohamed Ibn Chambas, Chairperson of the African Union High-Level Panel on Sudan, described the conflict as worse than those in Ukraine and Gaza, citing an urgent need for bold action.

"Sudan is facing an unprecedented hunger crisis, with over two million people at emergency or catastrophic hunger levels, and more than 15,000 fatalities recorded," he noted, calling for immediate action to end the conflict.

The leaders called for the warring parties, the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF), to stop fighting and prioritize Sudan's interests and its people.

They stressed that only genuine dialogue can lead to a sustainable solution, emphasizing the protection of civilians and requesting the AU Commission, in coordination with the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights, to investigate and recommend measures for civilian protection.

A representative of the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, also addressed the meeting.

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