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UK, US and Norway welcome negotiations between Sudan and South Sudan

The Sudan Troika (UK, US and Norway) have welcomed discussions between Sudan and South Sudan on transitional financial arrangements and commercial oil fees.

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US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre, and Foreign Secretary William Hague issued the following statement:

“We welcome the discussions held on transitional financial arrangements and commercial oil fees between the Government of Sudan (GoS) and Government of South Sudan (GoSS) that were facilitated by the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) in Addis Ababa on 25-30 November.

We believe these significant negotiations were advanced through the presentation of new proposals that warranted careful consideration by both sides. We note in particular a detailed proposal by the GoSS that put forth a financial contribution to help the GoS reduce its financial gap after South Sudan’s secession. In light of recent developments, we strongly urge the Parties to reconvene as soon as possible, ahead of the agreed December 20 date, to agree on arrangements for the export of oil. We urge both states to finalize as soon as possible a sustainable agreement that encompasses all outstanding petroleum sector and financial issues.

We further reiterate our strong commitment to continue working with the AU-HIP and both governments to reach an agreement on other outstanding post-CPA issues. We urge both governments to immediately implement agreed security and administrative arrangements on Abyei and the border. The withdrawal of all GoS and GoSS armed forces from Abyei, the establishment of the Abyei Area Administration, and the convening of the Abyei Joint Oversight Committee in Abyei are of highest priority and any obstacles to these objectives should be resolved quickly.

Swift resolution of these outstanding issues will advance security and prosperity for citizens of both countries. We further call on the parties to refrain from any further destabilizing actions or inflammatory language that might jeopardize the relations between both states, and in that context note with concern the recent and dangerous escalation of military action along the Sudan-South Sudan border.

We commend the efforts of the AUHIP in facilitating these negotiations and wholeheartedly support the AUHIP’s continued engagement. We encourage other international stakeholders to play a positive role in engaging with both Sudan and South Sudan to help peacefully resolve outstanding issues and work toward the development of two viable states at peace with one another.

We strongly support the AU Peace and Security Council’s call for the AUHIP to continue to prioritize democratization in both Sudan and South Sudan as a sine qua non for stability and equitable governance.

Published 6 December 2011