Division within Darfurian Movements
A recent press statement by the UN Spokesman blamed hindering of talks with DPA opponents on the divisions within the rebel movements themselves.
This finding has certainly been based on the factiousness trend now taking place within the mainstream movements.
Perhaps SLM/A inter-differences that lead to the division of the movement into two rival factions, one lead by Minnawi, the other by Abdulwahid Nur could be attributed to reasons relating to wielding of leadership. Each one of the two leaders may be having his own political concept of how to lead. Though regrettable, the two rival factions went to
Abuja to talk peace while divided. As is known, Minnawi faction opted for signing the Abuja Peace Agreement, while Nur stayed outside that deal for no good reason. Today, a group that supported this faction broke away from it to join the peace process. At the same time JEM movement was reported to have decided to sack its leader, Khalil Ibrahim who allied himself with the National Redemption Front.
These trends clearly show that some of the rebel movements’ leaders are not reacting to the responses of their movements’ bases. Instead, they used to take decisions on their own that were not consistent with the aspirations of their people.
Today, the general trend is to involve all the Darfurians in the peace process. With some factions already brought on board, efforts are being made to persuade others to join. While that end is hotly pursued, any breakaways or attempts to form new rebel movements can hardly be justified. A united Darfurian front would be in the interest of the peace process and the Darfurians themselves.
Divisions and breakaways will not only undermine the chances of peace, but would also portray Darfurians as having no common cause. We sincerely hope that the Darfurian movements will brush aside inter-differences and rally round peace as the end target.