President William Ruto spoke on Sunday with Sudan junta leader Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, making the first step since the Sudanese army chief openly rejected the Kenyan leader’s mediation role.
Dr. Ruto, however, called for the fighting, which erupted on April 15 this year, to stop and for parallel mediation forums to seek a long-lasting ceasefire and a humanitarian corridor.
General Burhan, who leads the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) that is fighting against his former deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, aka Hemedti’s Rapid Support Forces (RSF) paramilitary group, rejected mediation by a quartet of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad) led by the Kenyan President.
Although the details of the telephone conversation were not given, it signals President Ruto’s attempt to prove his impartiality against accusations of close business ties with Hemedti, with whom he did business in the past under the regime of Omar al-Bashir.
“I held a telephone call with the chairman of the Transitional Sovereign Council of Sudan, General Abdel Fattah Abdelrahman al-Burhan,” President Ruto said in a tweet.
The Igad and Jeddah processes must work together to facilitate the realization of a permanent ceasefire in Sudan. They must also push for the free movement of humanitarian assistance, the protection of refugees, and the reactivation of the political process.”
“In my capacity as chair of the Igad Quartet of Heads of States on Sudan, I also spoke with the President of Chad, General Mahatma Idriss Deby Itno; our conversation centered around the speedy restoration of normalcy in Sudan and support for refugee-hosting countries.”
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