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Sudanese and Ugandan Delegations Continue Steps to Implement the Nairobi Agreement

NAIROBI, KENYA... Representatives of the Sudanese and Ugandan governments issued the following statement today following three days of talks here on steps to implement the Nairobi Agreement, which is designed to normalize relations between the two countries and promote regional peace. This was the second round of ministerial-level talks held in Nairobi since an 11-point agreement between Sudan and Uganda was signed by Sudan President Omar al-Bashir and Uganda President Yoweri Museveni in Nairobi on Dec. 8, 1999. The agreement was mediated by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and witnessed by Kenya President Daniel Arap Moi. The March 1-3 talks were held under the auspices of The Carter Center to focus further on implementing of the Dec. 8 accord.

The following statement is issued by the delegation leaders, Ali Numeiri, Minister of State in the Ministry of External Relations, Sudan, and Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, Minister in Charge of the Presidency, Uganda.

Our two delegations met to review fully each point of the Nairobi Agreement and to further evaluate the steps taken thus far toward implementing the Agreement since we last met in January. This second round of the Joint Ministerial Committee was conducted in a spirit of candor and cooperation that has marked this process, which is aimed at restoring normal relations between the two countries and promoting peace in the region. While recognizing difficulties in the fulfillment of all aspects of the agreement, the two sides renewed their commitment to doing so. We reconfirmed our commitment to the mechanisms established under the Nairobi Agreement to resolve our differences.

In reviewing the Agreement, we acknowledged that many of its elements have not yet been implemented. We therefore agreed to request that our Presidents review the time frame required for implementation. Each side, however, restated its commitment to the full implementation of the Agreement.

We expressed our continued appreciation to President Carter and The Carter Center for their continuing role in assisting in the implementation of the Agreement. We equally expressed our gratitude to President Moi and the Government of Kenya for their continuing support of the process and assistance in providing a venue.

Background: The agreement between Sudan and Uganda to restore diplomatic relations and promote peace in the region was mediated by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and witnessed by Kenya President Daniel Arap Moi during a signing ceremony Dec. 8 in Nairobi. It includes pledges to: renounce the use of force to resolve differences; disband and disarm terrorist groups; respect each country's sovereignty and territorial integrity; cease support to any rebel groups; return all prisoners of war to their respective nations; locate and return abductees to their families; and offer amnesty and reintegration assistance to all former combatants who renounce the use of force.

President al-Bashir and President Museveni invited President Carter last spring to facilitate their discussions on improving bilateral relations between their two countries. Since then, the Carter Center's Conflict Resolution Program has continued to work with high-level representatives of each government to define an agenda for an agreement and action steps to implement it.

The Carter Center is a nongovernmental organization that promotes peace and health worldwide. Its Conflict Resolution Program has been instrumental in advancing peace processes in Bosnia, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Liberia, North Korea, and Sudan.

Copies of the Dec. 8 agreement between Sudan and Uganda and the Jan. 21 statement following the first round of implementation talks can be found on the World Wide Web at: under "news releases" in the "What's Up" section.

Read the Nairobi Agreement, Dec. 8, 1999

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