12 November 2001 US Special Envoy for Sudan John Danforth arrives in Sudan for his first official visit regarding peace, a three-day visit for discussions with Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir, the two Sudanese Vice-Presidents, the Presidential Peace Advisor, and unspecified opposition leaders. He is also scheduled to visit displaced persons camps near Khartoum as well as the Nuba mountains and El-Obeid in central Sudan and Rumbek in southern Sudan.

"US Peace Envoy Due in Sudan", News Article by Agence France Presse, 12 November 2001; "US Envoy Trip Marks New Stage in Sudan Relations", News Article by Reuters, 12 November 2001

12 November 2001 The Sudanese Health Minister Ahmed Bilal Osman states that the Sudanese government will once again declare a three-day cease-fire in war zones to facilitate a nation-wide campaign for vaccination against polio.

"Sudan Declares a Three - Day Ceasefire for Anti-Polio Vaccination", News Article by Agence France Presse, 12 November 2001

14 November 2001 A spokesman for the Democratic Unionist Party stated that at a meeting in Cairo the party had succeeded in overcoming differences within the organisation. He dismissed positions taken by the "reform" group of party leaders and the eastern Sudan group who either rejected or expressed reservations about the Cairo decisions. He denied that there were differences between the DUP and NDA over the return to Sudan of DUP deputy leader Ahmed al-Mirghani.

"Opposition Party Leaders Agree to Overcome Differences in Cairo Meeting", Nile Courier (Khartoum), 14 November 2001.

14 November 2001 US Special Envoy to Sudan John Danforth states that he has no comprehensive peace plan to offer the Sudanese, but that he has proposed four major ideas to Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir to alleviate civilian suffering serve as a confidence-building measure. The proposals involve providing continuous access to the Nuba mountains for relief purposes, creating zones and periods of tranquillity for humanitarian efforts, the cessation of bombing or other military attacks on civilians, and the cessation of abductions. He describes his talk with President Bashir as "positive", and states that he will present to SPLA leader John Garang in Nairobi later in the week.

Danforth further states that the US will not impose a solution on Sudan and that "the only people who can end the war are the people of Sudan.the answer is right here.It would be nice if someone could breeze in and solve problems. But the only people that could end the war are the people of Sudan". He also states that "I have set one year for my mission and if I fail, I will go back to President George Bush and tell him that we have failed". He adds that in the case of failure, another person might be appointed as envoy.

"US Envoy to Sudan Presents Four-Point Peace Plan", News Article by Associated Press, 14 November 2001; "US Envoy Proposes Sudan Confidence-Building Measures", News Article by Agence France Presse, 14 November 2001; "No Peace Plan for Sudan Is In Place, US Envoy States.", Los Angeles Times, 15 November 2001

15 November 2001 US Special Envoy to Sudan John Danforth helps broker a four-week cease-fire in Sudan, allowing the World Food Programme to make its first food drops within the Nuba mountains in more than a decade.

"Sudan Ceasefire Allows Aid Drops", News Article by BBC News, 15 November 2001

17 November 2001 SPLA leader John Garang has a two-hour meeting with US Special Envoy to Sudan John Danforth in Nairobi. In a formal statement on the meeting the SPLA reiterates its accusations and demands:

1 it calls for the US imposition of "no-fly and safe havens" in southern Sudan

2 it again accuses the Khartoum government of practising "slave trade and slavery" in Sudan

3 it calls for the cessation of oil development, which it alleges is fuelling the war and causing the "massive displacement of local populations"

4 it accuses the Khartoum government of "religious intolerance.religious motivated conflicts"

5 it attempts to associate the Khartoum government with "international terrorism on the domestic scene"

6 it argues that the IGAD peace process "is the only credible process that has identified a mechanism of resolving the conflict in the Sudan".

7 it argues that there is a "fundamental and irreconcilable difference between the SPLM and NIF [Khartoum government] on the issue of sharia".

8 it repeats its demands for "a Confederate arrangement between the North and the South (including the associated areas), a transitional government at the centre that includes all parties (but not based on the NIF Islamist State), a comprehensive cease-fire that includes mutual disengagement and withdrawal of forces behind agreed lines, and a referendum on self-determination after an interim period, followed by general elections, in the context of the outcome of the referendum".

The SPLA-affiliated organisation, the Federation of Sudanese Civil Society Organisations -New Sudan also submits a Memorandum to Special Envoy Danforth which similarly attempts to associate the Khartoum government with "international terrorism". It further argues that "[t]he present regime has not shown good faith in the search for a negotiated settlement".

"The Statement on the Meeting of the SPLM/SPLA Chairman Dr. John Garang de Mabior With the United States Special Envoy for Peace in Sudan", SPLA News Agency, 17 November 2001; "A Memorandum to Senator John Danforth: Peace With Justice", Federation of Sudanese Civil Society Organisations - New Sudan, 17 November 2001


18 November 2001 US Special Envoy John Danforth meets with SPLA forces in the Nuba mountains and with John Garang in Nairobi. He declines to describe Garang's response to his proposals, but another US official calls Garang "cagey". In a press conference in Nairobi Danforth reiterates how difficult it will be to achieve peace: "They've been at it for a long, long time, and there's a great deal of distrust between the parties.There's no reason why it couldn't go on indefinitely. So I wouldn't bet much on it." Describing his four proposals as a "test" he declares that: "They [both sides] can respond to that test with 'Yes' or 'No'. If their response is 'No', I don't see anything more that the United States can do.If the response is 'No', I do not think it is very possible to have a warm and fuzzy relationship with the US." Danforth further states that he will return to Sudan in mid-January to see if his "good will" test has been adhered to.

Whilst in Nairobi Danforth also meets with Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi to review the Sudanese peace process. The two agree that the IGAD peace initiative must be speeded up and reinvigorated. The US delegation expresses confidence in Moi as the best placed statesmen to spearhead the process within the IGAD framework.

"For Danforth, 2 Tales in Sudan", The Washington Post, 18 November 2001; "US Envoy Downbeat About Chance of Peace in Sudan", News Article by Reuters, 17 November 2001; "US Will End Attempts to Halt Sudan Conflict if Warring Parties Show No Commitment to Peace", News Article by Associated Press, 17 November 2001; "Kenyan President Confers With US Special Envoy on Peace in Sudan", News Article by XINHUA, 18 November 2001

19 November 2001 The Sudanese government announces that it has recaptured the south-western town of Deim Zubeir from the rebel SPLA.

"Sudanese Government Claims Recapture of Rebel-Held Town", News Article by Agence France Presse, 18 November 2001

19 November 2001 Following meetings with Egyptian officials in Cairo, US Special Envoy to Sudan John Danforth states that he is giving two months to the parties in the Sudanese civil war to show interest in peace "expressed in actions" before ending his mission. He further states that it will be "very, very difficult to bring the two sides together".

"US Envoy Gives Sudan Parties Two Months to Show Interest in Peace", News Article by Agence France Presse, 19 November 2001

23 November 2001 Mohammed Osman al-Mirghani, leader of the opposition National Democratic Alliance, arrives in Asmara for a leadership meeting of the NDA. The meeting will be attended by SPLA leader John Garang, all the opposition leaders outside Sudan, and a delegation from the NDA secretariat inside Sudan. An official NDA statement rejects rumours of internal disagreements about the meetings agenda, but expresses regret regarding "hasty stances" adopted by some factions within the organisation.

"Sudanese Opposition Alliance Meets in Asmara, Eritrea", News Article by Al-Khartoum, 24 November 2001

26 November 2001 It is announced that UN World Food Programme food airdrops in the rebel-held Nuba Mountains are near completion. Humanitarian Aid Commission emergency administration director Khalid Faraj states that the airdrops are proceeding "smoothly and without hurdles".

"Central Sudan Relief Airdrops to be Completed This Week", News Article by Agence France Presse, 26 November 2001

27 November 2001 Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir's response to Special Envoy John Danforth's four "goodwill" proposals are reported in the press. Bashir is quoted as saying that the government has reservations about the Nuba mountains ceasefire, which must include, in his view, areas through which a government pipeline travels. Bashir expresses his acceptance of the other proposals, but states that the government wants Danforth to produce evidence regarding claims of "slavery" in Sudan.

President Bashir's peace advisor Dr Ghazi Saleheddin Atabani is also quoted as complaining that Danforth's proposals put more pressure on the government than on the rebels. He states: "The proposals constitute pressure on the government.The US says the proposals are a test to the positions of both parties, but they are a test to the government only."

"US 'Technical Team' to Sudan Next Week", News Article by Reuters, 27 November 2001

27 November 2001 In a public State Department Special Briefing US Special Envoy to Sudan John Danforth announces the imminent visit of a "technical team" to Sudan to discuss his peace proposals with the Khartoum government. He states: "My meetings were preliminary and the group that's going out next week is going to be dealing with much more details (sic)." He also announces that he will himself return to Africa for about 10 days from January 7 of next year.

Danforth states that the US purpose in Sudan is to act as "catalyst" for existing peace initiatives. Responding to questions regarding the response to his four "good will" proposals, he also comments that "[w]e put forward four ideas and nobody threw us out the door".

Danforth also distinguishes between the issue of Sudan's assistance to the US in the war on terrorism, and the broader issue of Sudanese-US relations. He states that "regardless of whatever help we are getting on the issue of terrorism, the issue of peace in Sudan has separate value as far as the United States is concerned. It is not going to be possible for Sudan to have a close relationship with the United States so long as the view within the United States is that people are being oppressed".

In response to questions regarding Sudanese oil development Danforth states his view that although it is unlikely to have exacerbated the conflict, he does believe that it has caused depopulation in certain areas.

"Special Briefing on Danforth's Travel to Sudan", US Department of State, Washington, DC, 27 November 2001; "US 'Technical Team' to Sudan Next Week", News Article by Reuters, 27 November 2001

27 November 2001 Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir reiterates the government's intention to cooperate with the American Special Envoy John Danforth. He emphasises Sudan's movement from one-party rule to multiparty democracy and urges all groups to participate in elections. He further argues that there is no justification for the existence of political opposition based outside the country.

"Sudan Will Cooperate With US Peace Envoy, President Bashir Says", News Article by SUNA, 27 November 2001

30 November 2001 In a speech in Asmara before Eritrean government officials, Arab and European ambassadors, and the US ambassador, National Democratic Alliance leader Mohammed Osman al-Mirghani calls upon opposition factions in the NDA to concentrate on the main issue of peace without causing differences on marginal and irrelevant issues. He further calls on NDA members to come out with a unified vision and response to the Egyptian-Libyan peace initiative and calls for a speeding up of the peace process. Whilst calling for flexibility in negotiations he expresses reservations about the Nigerian sponsored Abuja proposed peace conference, arguing that southern and northern discussions at such a conference could have negative consequences on the unity of both the NDA and Sudan as a whole.

"Opposition Leader Comments on Why They Rejected Nigerian Initiative", News Article at Al-Ra'y al-Amm web site (Khartoum), 30 November 2001

2 December 2001 The SPLA accuses the Khartoum government of bombing villages in southern Sudan. An SPLA press release claims that the Khartoum government is engaged in "carpet bombings of civilian targets". SPLA Spokesman Samson Kwaje states that [the Sudanese government] are bombing all over the place.The government is not interested in a peaceful negotiated end to the conflict". The SPLA statement calls on "the US and the world community to restrain the [Government of Sudan] from carrying out these (sic) senseless targeting of the civilian population.We further ask the Us not to get on the band wagon of the European Union whose members are friendly to the regime despite Khartoum's miserable record on human rights".

The Sudanese government denies the SPLA allegations and states that there are no current military operations in southern Sudan and that Khartoum remains committed to its agreement made with US Special Envoy John Danforth which included a cessation of bombing.

"Press Release: Bombs Still Fall on Civilian Targets Despite US Appeal for Halt", SPLM/A News Agency, 1 December 2001; "Sudan Denies Rebel Statements That it Bombed South", News Article by Reuters, 2 December 2001

2 December 2001 The Sudanese government denies claims made by the rebel SPLA that it had bombed three villages in Awiel East county in the northern Bahr el Ghazal. It states that there are no current military operations in southern Sudan and accuses the rebels of trying to undermine the ongoing US-Sudanese dialogue.

"Sudan Denies Rebel Statements That It Bombed South", News Article by Reuters, 2 December 2001

2 December 2001 A National Democratic Alliance delegation of domestic Sudanese members leaves Khartoum to attend a leadership conference in the Eritrean capital of Asmara. The conference is designed to discuss and formulate the NDA response to Egyptian and Libyan peace proposals and requests for its participants at a proposed national peace conference.

"Sudanese Opposition Allowed to Leave for Asmara Conference", News Article by Agence France Presse, 2 December 2001

4 December 2001 UN Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Sulaf Eddin Salih announces that the airdrop of food within rebel-held areas in the Nuba Mountains has been completed.. He states that the Sudanese government is assessing the operation and that the issue of extending the truce in the area would be discussed with a US delegation expected soon in Khartoum. He also states that the Sudanese government is currently considering a UN request to drop non-food items such as medicines, blankets and other supplies to inhabitants within the same SPLA-controlled areas.

Commissioner Salih also states that over 50,000 people, mostly women, children and the elderly have moved from SPLA-held zones to areas controlled by the government in the Nuba Mountains, and are in need of food, medicine and shelter. The Sudanese government will be calling for their inclusion in UN-sponsored programmes for displaced persons, he reveals.

"UN Food Airdrops Completed in Sudan's Rebel-Held Nuba Mountains", News Article by Agence France Presse, 4 December 2001

7 December 2001 A US technical delegation, led by Jeffrey Millington, head of Sudan affairs at the State Department, arrives in Sudan for discussions with the government over US peace envoy John Danforth's proposals. The delegation is also scheduled to visit the rebel-held town of Rumbek in southern Sudan's Lakes State, before moving on to Nairobi for discussions with rebel SPLA officials.

"US Delegation Kicks Off Sudan Talks", News Article by Agence France Presse, 8 December 2001

8 December 2001 The Sudanese government lifts censorship restrictions on the country's English-language newspaper, The Khartoum Monitor, which had not been included in the general lifting of restrictions that took place in November.

"Sudanese Government Lifts Censorship Restrictions on Newspapers", News Article by Associated Press, 8 December 2001

8 December 2001 Umma Party Vice-Chairman Omar Nour al-Diem, rejects a National Democratic Alliance invitation to rejoin the opposition alliance group. He calls the invitation ridiculous and states that the NDA had not changed its ideas, ideas which were an obstacle to a comprehensive political solution. He further states that the NDA had a hidden agenda, that it wanted to cripple the process of arriving at a comprehensive political solution, and that it was indirectly trying to undermine the Egyptian-Libyan peace initiative.

"Ummah Party's Reacts (sic) to Invitation to Join National Democratic Alliance", Al-Khartoum (Khartoum), 8 December 2001

8 December 2001 A US technical team, led by the US State Department official in charge of Sudanese affairs, visits Khartoum for six-day talks on the US Special Envoy's peace proposals. The Sudanese government states that the discussions centred on the issue of "slavery" and abduction, as well as dealing with whether a truce in the Nuba Mountains region of Sudan should include an oil pipeline.

It is also revealed that the US team is scheduled to visit southern and western Sudan to discuss peace proposals with the SPLA. The Sudanese government also states that it has dispatched a fact-finding team to investigate allegations of slavery.

"US Team Fleshes Out Sudan Peace Proposals", News Article by Reuters, 8 December 2001; "US Delegation Kicks Off Sudan Talks", News Article by Agence France Presse, 7 December 2001

12 December 2001 US Assistant Secretary of State Walter Kansteiner confirms that Sudan has been cooperating with the US counter-terrorism campaign for some time and that this collaboration had reached new levels since the 11 September attacks. He states: " We appreciate Khartoum's relationship with us. The long-term cooperation is driven by the internal Sudanese situation, particularly the peace process."

"US Official Accuses Somalia of Harbouring Terrorists", News Article by XINHUA, 12 December 2001

14 December 2001 Roger Winter, Director of the US Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, reports that, following week-long negotiations in Sudan, the Sudanese government and the rebel SPLA have agreed to extend a ceasefire in the Nuba mountains. He states: "Anything that gets both sides together to negotiate a ceasefire in Nuba, which has the worst humanitarian situation in Sudan, is a breakthrough." Winter also comments: "There is a clear commitment by President Bush to improve the situation and also a congressional and popular constituency I've not seen since apartheid in South Africa.It remain to be seen whether the parties' actions will reflect the agreements, but we are encouraged by the progress that has been achieved.Our intention is to have a ceasefire negotiated between the the time the [US Special Envoy John Danforth] returns [to Sudan] in January."

The US Embassy in Sudan gives further details of the agreement. It states: "The [Sudanese] government and the [SPLA].agreed to negotiate an internationally monitored cease-fire to cover the entire Nuba Mountains region, and to a relief and rehabilitation programme for all civilians.[the two parties] made a clear, firm commitment to avoid all bombardment of civilian and humanitarian targets."

"US Brokers Sudan Truce in Step to Wider Peace", News Article by Reuters, 14 December 2001; "Sudan's Warring Parties Approves US-Brokered Cease-Fire, Aid Proposals", News Article by Associated Press, 14 December 2001

15 December 2001 SPLA/SPLM spokesman Samson Kwaje confirms the that there was "more or less" an agreement with the Sudanese government for a six-month ceasefire, but asserts that alleged government bombing did not bode well for its durability and undermined the trust needed to negotiate an end to the war.

"Sudan Rebels Say Government Still Bombing Nuba Region", News Article by Reuters, 15 December 2001

19 December 2001 The rebel SPLA issues a statement claiming that it has killed 250 government troops in two battles in the south, at Nihau Id and Fang. It further claims that that the Sudanese government has launched "its ritual dry season military offensive" and warns it "not to escalate the war but rather seek a peaceful negotiated settlement"

"SPLA Thwarts GOS Attempts in WUN and CUN", News Release by SPLM/A, 19 December 2001; "Sudan Rebels Say They Killed Over 250 Govt Troops", News Article by Reuters, 19 December 2001

7 January 2002 In an interview with the Kenya-based magazine The East African, Mr Mohammed Ahmed Dirdeery, the Sudanese charge d'affaires in Nairobi, comments on the IGAD peace initiative. He states that IGAD has "[u]p until now.achieved very little" but affirms that it "is the correct forum to realise peace in Sudan".

Ahmed further attributes the failure of the peace process to the fact that "one of the parties to the conflict is not willing to make peace". He states:

"Throughout the last eight years, Col. John Garang [of the SPLA] has adamantly rejected all concessions from the government like the right to self-determination, the abrogation of sharia law in southern Sudan and a fair formula for sharing resources, including the revenue from oil. For him, IGAD is the diplomatic continuation of his military campaign".

"IGAD Peace Initiative Has Achieved Little for Sudan", The East African (Nairobi), 7 January 2002

7 January 2002 Dr Riek Machar of the Sudan People's Democratic Front and the Sudan People's Defence Force and John Garang of the SPLA announce the merger of the two organisations. The "Nairobi Declaration of Unity Between the SPLM/SPLA and the SPDF" attacks what it calls the "recalcitrant and bellicose attitude of the NIF regime" an "illegitimate, fascist and Islamic fundamentalist regime". It further declares that there will be an "immediate cessation of hostilities and coalescence of previously antagonistic military units [of the SPLA and SPDF]" in order to forge "a single entity to engage the enemy forces in combat operations.To conduct immediate military operations against forces of the NIF regime as well as to intensify all other forms of struggle".

"Declaration: Nairobi Declaration on Unity Between the SPLM/SPLA and SPDF",


8 January 2002 Sudanese First Vice President Ali Osman Taha addresses the IGAD Council of Ministers in Khartoum. He states that he is "gratified.that serious dialogue is prevailing over war. I am also gratified to notice the strong desire to settle conflicts through negotiations as well as the will to establish lasting peace in the region".

"The Speech of the First Vice President of the Republic of Sudan During the IGAD Session", The Khartoum Monitor, 9 January 2002, p. 2

9 January 2002 Mutrif Siddiq, under-secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, expresses his hope that that the merger agreement signed between the rebel SPLA and Riek Machar's Sudan People's Democratic Front, will prove to be an important move toward a peaceful settlement of Sudan's civil war. "Any agreement among the warring Southern Sudanese leaders will help the peace process in the Sudan", he states.

"Hopes That Riak-Garang Agreement Will Boost Peace Process", The Khartoum Monitor, 9 January 2002, p. 1

9 January 2002 A joint humanitarian assessment mission to the Nuba Mountain regions of Southern Kordofan State, in south-central Sudan, by the Sudan government's Humanitarian Aid Commission, the US Agency for International Development and other relief organisations is reported as proceeding "very well" and to be nearing completion. A complementary multi-agency and multi-sectoral assessment of rebel-held areas in the Nuba Mountains, coordinated by the United Nations, is also initiated, whilst a similar assessment of government-held areas has already started. The missions are the fulfilment of the agreement made by both sides in the civil war following the visit to Sudan of US peace envoy John Danforth.

"Sudan: Nuba Assessments 'Progressing Well'", UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, News Article by United Nations Integrated Regional Information Network, Nairobi, 9 January 2002

11 January 2002 Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir addresses the opening session of the 9th Ordinary IGAD Summit of Heads of State in Khartoum. He states: "We wholeheartedly condemn terrorism and join the rest of the international community in the fight against this heinous crime, which respects no boundaries, religion or culture."

On the Sudanese peace process he further states:

"Both as the Current Chairman of IGAD and as the Head of State of Sudan, I would like to reiterate the commitment of my Government towards the IGAD Peace Process on the conflict in Southern Sudan based on the Declaration of Principles. The government of Sudan will continue to engage in good faith with the SPLA/M with a view to reaching at a negotiable and a mutually agreed upon solution to the conflict that has, for the last four decades, continued to cause death to our people and destruction to the economy of our country."

"Opening Address by HE President Omer Hassan Al Bashir, President of Sudan During the 9th Ordinary IGAD Summit of Heads of State", The Khartoum Monitor, 12 January 2002, p. 3

12 January 2002 Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmad Mahir returns to Egypt following the completion of the 9th IGAD Ministers summit in Khartoum. Mahir reports that he had meetings with Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir, as well as with Libyan, Eritrean, Somalian and Norwegian government representatives regarding activating the Egyptian-Libyan peace initiative.

"Egyptian Foreign Minister Comments on Outcome of Sudan Visit", News Article by MENA, 11 January 2002

14 January 2002 Representatives from the Sudanese government and the rebel SPLA meet at a secret location in Switzerland for talks, co-sponsored by the United States and Switzerland, to discuss a lasting ceasefire. A Swiss Foreign Ministry spokesperson states: "The point [of the discussions] is to define the modalities of the ceasefire. There has not been a commitment so far and the idea is to negotiate this."

"Sudan Rebels Meet Government for Truce Talks", News Article by Reuters, 14 January 2002
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