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US commends Chad, Sudan for resuming diplomatic ties
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Nov 14, 2008 - 6:32:06 AM

US commends Chad, Sudan for resuming diplomatic ties


14 November 2008
WASHINGTON- The United States welcomed Thursday the resumption of diplomatic ties between Chad and Sudan, calling the move a "crucial step" towards resolving the conflict in Darfur.

"The United States welcomes the exchange of Ambassadors between the Governments of Chad and Sudan on November 10," said State Department spokesman Robert Wood in a statement.

"This is a crucial step towards bringing peace and stability to the region and resolving the conflict in Darfur," said Woods, adding that he commended the Libyan government for their efforts to mediate the exchange.

Sudan broke off diplomatic relations with Chad six months ago, accusing Ndjamena of sponsoring an unprecedented assault on Khartoum by Darfur rebel group the Justice and Equality Movement.

Chad denied any involvement and in turn accused Sudan of having backed a Chadian rebel push on Ndjamena in February that reached the gates of the presidential palace before it was repulsed.

Sudan has been on a diplomatic push to mend relations after the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court requested an arrest warrant in July against President Omar al-Beshir for alleged war crimes in Darfur.

In addition to May this year, Chad and Sudan also severed diplomatic ties in 2006 for four months after a rebel attack on Chad.

The United States "remains committed to reaching a resolution to the conflict in Darfur" and "ameliorating the humanitarian suffering in both Darfur and eastern Chad," said Woods.

UN officials say up to 300,000 people have died and more than 2.2 million have fled their homes since the Darfur conflict erupted in February 2003. Sudan insists the death toll stands at 10,000.

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