Further to my posting yesterday, I am excerpting a few lines from President Buyoya’s speech to the summit of political parties in southern Sudan on 1 March:
“During the long years of war, the people of southern Sudan demonstrated that they could never be ruled against their will, and that the destiny of southern Sudan lies in the hands of the people of southern Sudan. This election will be a milestone in making that a reality. The national elections are a major pillar of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. It is through democratic participation that the peace agreement becomes truly owned by the citizens of Sudan, and therefore truly national and truly comprehensive. These national elections are held just nine months before the people of southern Sudan will be voting to exercise their right of self-determination. These elections are an important step towards the fulfillment of that central pillar of the CPA. Under whatever sovereign arrangement they choose, the Sudanese people have fundamental democratic rights.”
This, I hope, makes clear the AU’s commitment to the CPA in all its aspects.
On the U.S., consider the following lines from Kate Almquist’s report on Sudan for the Council on Foreign Relations:
“as the principal proponent and overseer of the CPA, U.S. credibility as a peacemaker in Sudan and Africa will be affected by whether and how the United States supports the south’s path to
independence. Without the unequivocal support of the United States and the international community for the south’s right to self-determination, it will have no incentive to seek this peacefully and avoid renewed conflict. Moreover, the rebel movements in Darfur would conclude that the United States and the international community are not trustworthy guarantors of a settlement with Khartoum, thus eliminating the possibility of a political arrangement that restores stability in Darfur and allows the peaceful return of IDPs to their homes.”
One of the points to bear in mind is that the U.S. takes its commitments and credibility seriously. If it is to be regarded as a credible peacemaker elsewhere, it needs to deliver on its commitment to the CPA.
Note: yesterday’s posting was unable to accept comments for technical reasons. Please post any comments in response to this.