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African Union says CPA parties still have challenges to face.

November 24, 2008 (ADDIS ABABA) -- The African Union chief, Jean Ping, praised progress made by the two partners of 2005 peace agreement but he warned that many challenges still lie ahead.

AU's Jean Ping talks to the media following his meeting with Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir in Khartoum on August 4, 2008. afp

Ping was speaking in a meeting of the African Union Peace and Security Council in the Ethiopian capital to discuss the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CAP) that put an end to two decades of war in southern Sudan. "The two parties have demonstrated a clear commitment to dialogue, to overcome the challenges facing them," the head of the AU commission said. However "At the same time, many challenges still lie ahead," Ping added. The AU chief dealt in his speech with the expected 2009 elections and the delay in the revision of bills that to ensure the run of polls in best conditions, the demarcation of north-south border and the 2011 referendum for south Sudan on independence. The fighting between northern and southern Sudanese armies in the disputed Abyei area last May had been considered the biggest threat to the CPA implementation. Since the parties agreed to refer their dispute to the international tribunal of arbitration and its verdict should be announced with six months. The Sudanese government representative to the meeting, Yahia Hussein, who is in charge with CPA implementation at the Sudanese presidency stressed on the need to remove US economic sanctions against Sudan and urged donors to honor their pledges for development. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, minister for regional cooperation in the south Sudan government, said the north-south border must be resolved to better determine the wealth sharing. "The boundary is also crucial because of the sharing of oil wealth. We are sharing oil wealth (with Khartoum) within south Sudan and if we have no boundaries, we can't know where those oil wells are," he added. He further voiced his concern that most humanitarian aid had been diverted to conflict-ridden Darfur in the east, leaving less for the south. The meeting was also attended by the UNAMIS, the Assessment and Evaluation Commission, Ethiopian government which is heading the IGAD, The Joint Assessment Mission, and South Africa, the head of AU committee for the southern Sudan reconstruction. (ST)

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Publication:Sudan Tribune (Sudan)
Date:Nov 27, 2008
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