June 14, 2021 (JUBA) – The South Sudanese mediation hinted they could suspend negotiations between the Sudanese government and the SPLM-N al-Hilu if the two parties did not reach a framework agreement on Tuesday.
The parties were supposed to sign a framework agreement two weeks after the start of the talks on May 26, but the differences over the extent of the separation between religion and state prevented that.
Chief Mediator Tut Gatluak Monday held consultative meetings with small negotiating delegations (1 + 3) from the two parties to deliberate on the points of contention.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Gatluak said the discussions aimed at narrowing the gaps between the parties, underscoring that progress has been achieved on some issues.
He stressed the commitment of the two delegations to the peace process “as it is a central issue” for the people in Sudan.
Gatluak said that he agreed with the two parties that “Tuesday’s meeting would be decisive”.
“This means that either the framework agreement was signed, or the negotiations would be suspended,” he added.
“The main issue was the relationship of religion with the state, which was resolved by signing the Declaration of Principles in Juba between the Head of the Sovereign Council, Lt-Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the head of the SPLM-N Abdel Aziz al-Hilu, still but they diverge on this issue,” he added.