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Sudan's president relieves ministers to pave way for national unity govt

7/10/2005 10:43pm

KHARTOUM, July 10, 2005 (Xinhua) -- Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir here Sunday issued a decree relieving all current ministers and state ministers and presidential advisers prior to the formation of an interim national unity government.
Al-Bashir made the decision in consultations with newly sworn-in First-Vice President John Garang at the first meeting of the presidential council, which also includes Vice President Ali Othman Mohammed Taha, the Sudanese Radio Umdurman reported.

According to the decree, the relieved top officials have been assigned to go on running duties of their ex-ministries till the formation of the national unity government.

The Sudanese president also issued another decree which relieved all states' governors, ministers and mayors as well as state advisors.

Meanwhile, the president also announced to lift the 16-year-old state of emergency in all states except the states of north Darfur, south Darfur, west Darfur, the Red Sea and Kassala.

A new presidential council was sworn-in on Saturday. Al-Bashir was re-sworn-in as the country's president, while Garang, head of the ex-rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), was sworn- in as the first-vice president and Ali Othman Mohammed Taha as vice president.

According to the new interim constitution signed and approved by the presidential council before the sworn-in ceremony, an interim government of national unity will take office in August.

Garang, ex-southern rebel leader of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), arrived here Friday afternoon for the first time after two decades of civil war.

The Sudanese government under President al-Bashir and Garang's SPLM signed a peace deal on Jan. 9 in the Kenyan capital Nairobi, putting a final seal on the longest civil war in Africa.

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