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SLM Founder: We Rejected Proposal by Bashir’s Regime to Separate Darfur

SLM Founder: We Rejected Proposal by Bashir’s Regime to Separate Darfur

Wednesday, 6 March, 2019 - 11:15
Abdel Wahed Mohamed el-Nur (AFP)
London- Mustafa Siri
The leader and founder of the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM), Abdel Wahed Mohamed el-Nur, said that his movement stands strongly with the “youth revolution” that began in December in Khartoum and the different Sudanese cities.

Nur, whose army is fighting government forces, says he refuses to engage in any negotiations with the current regime.

In an exclusive phone interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, the SLM leader said that President Omar al-Bashir “has established a system that divided people on the basis of religion and race, and ignited wars in all regions of Sudan.”

He revealed that his movement had repeatedly received offers from Bashir’s government, through international mediators, to separate Darfur and to declare the right to self-determination.

He stressed that he had rejected all such attempts, saying: “We do not want to divide Sudan... but we want to unite it through programs and visions agreed upon by all.”

As for the current revolution in the country, he said: “It is the result of the accumulation of crises across generations, which inherited a failed state and the absence of a national project that can unite the people in all walks of life.”

Nur went on to say: “We are working with others to achieve the aspirations of the Sudanese people, in a state of equal citizenship that does not discriminate between people on the basis of religion, gender, color, or culture.”

He emphasized that his movement has been calling for the establishment of a secular Sudanese state and the separation of religion from the state.

The SLM chief - who has insisted on rejecting any negotiations with the government since he failed to sign the Abuja Agreement in Nigeria in June 2006 - said his movement stood with the people’s demands to change the ruling regime, denying government’s accusation of its movement to cause chaos using weapons received from Israel.

He noted that the SLM “aims to establish a federal system within the framework of a federal democracy, where a citizen can be nominated to become governor or choose his rulers freely.”

Nur stressed that his movement called for the unity of Sudan on new bases, rejecting any partial solutions for the current crisis in the country. He called for the immediate implementation of the Sudanese people’s demands, including the departure of Bashir and his regime and- the formation of a transitional government, “which gives young people of both genders the largest proportion, because they are most affected by the situation that has been going on for three decades.”

“The next transitional period should witness the drafting of a democratic constitution… the establishment of economic foundations that target the citizen… the return of the displaced to their areas by providing them with production tools so they do not become dependent on the state,” he remarked.

On his candidacy for presidential elections in a democratic system, Nur said: “This depends on the decision of the institutions of our movement,” adding that if this happens, he will be a servant of his people and not an authoritarian.

Nur acknowledged having a public relation with Israel, noting that he visited Israel in February 2009 after a large number of Sudanese arriving there through the Egyptian Sinai Desert. Later, he opened an SLM office to follow up the affairs of the Sudanese there.

Stressing that Sudan supported the establishment of a two-State solution to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, he said: “We have to establish relations that achieve the interests of our country.”

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