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Are the Incentives Offered to Khartoum by Blair an Effort to Appease Washington? By: Al Sammani Awadallah
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Sep 19, 2006 - 10:38:00 PM

Are the Incentives Offered to Khartoum by Blair an Effort to Appease Washington?

 
By: Al Sammani Awadallah  

The incentives which British PM Tony Blair has offered to Khartoum for accepting deployment of international forces in Darfur are seen by observers as a further means of securing Sudanís consent to resolution 1706.


In spite of the announcement of these incentives, which are represented by the lifting of economic sanctions against Khartoum, President Al Bashir has reiterated his rejection during the recently held NAM summit in Havana, which was attended, among others, by the UN General Secretary. President Al Bashir had earlier declared that Sudan, the first sub-Saharan country to gain its independence will not be the first to be re-colonized, considering the resolution as falling within international schemes to re-colonize Sudan and undermine its sovereignty. Sudan has made intensive efforts including proposal of several alternative in the even of an AU withdrawal from Darfur, a matter which still awaits decision as the African Peace and Security Council meets today in New York on the sidelines of the UNís General Assembly meeting. The Sudanese government sees rejection of deployment of international forces not only as its own decision but additionally that of the National Assembly, Council of Ministers and the masses which took to the street in objection to the resolution. The enticements offered by Britain come in the wake of important developments which have further complicated issues including discovery by Sudanese authorities of removal by an AU plane of soil samples from Darfur. These enticements also come in line with American efforts to propose a draft resolution which precludes Sudanís consent to deployment of forces. Some observers have pointed out that 1706 was not preceded by adequate consultations between Britain, which proposed it and the US which insists on enforcing it. This led to serious differences between Britain and France on one hand and the US on the other with London and Paris stressing Sudanís consent as a prerequisite to deployment while Washington deemed that approval as unnecessary. These differences seem to have motivated Britain to offer these incentives. Meanwhile President Al Bashir viewed the resolution as leading to further violence and sedition which left no choice but rejection. Al Bashir opined that the Security Council should instead have targeted rebel factions which continue to refuse joining the peace process adding that implementation of the resolution has become an end unto itself for the powers which have stood behind it. Observers concluded that US pressure against Sudan has been unsuccessful prompting to resort to Britain to offer these incentives which have largely been ignored by the Sudanese government.
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