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Deputy Secretary Zoellick: Travel to Abuja, Nigeria

Deputy Secretary of State Robert B. Zoellick ,far right, looks on while Dr. Magthoub el Khalifa ,center, shakes hands with Minni Minnawi, Chairman of the Sudan Liberation Movement Army [State Dept.]
Deputy Secretary Zoellick looks on while Dr. Magthoub el Khalifa shakes hands with Minni Minnawi, Chairman of the Sudan Liberation Movement Army.
Deputy Secretary of State Robert B. Zoellick departed May 1 for Abuja, Nigeria, to try to assist the African Union mediation team find solutions to the remaining issues regarding a peace agreement for Darfur. The United States has worked closely with the AU and other international partners to energize the Abuja peace negotiations, and welcomed the comprehensive negotiating text presented by the AU on April 26.

The parties have made progress in recent days, but some key issues remain unresolved. The United States urges the Darfur rebel movements to focus on the few key issues that stand in the way of reaching a settlement, and we urge the Government of Sudan to send a senior representative back to Abuja to finalize the peace agreement. All parties should make a concentrated effort to seize this opportunity for peace.

The Deputy Secretary supported Salim Salim and the AU mediation team in an effort to close the gaps between the parties. Apart from this effort, the Deputy Secretary will also hope to meet with Nigerian President OlusegunObasanjo and other AU leaders who will be in Abuja this week for high-level AU meetings. He met with commanders of the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS) to discuss the present security situation in Darfur, ways to ensure the delivery of humanitarian relief, and how to improve security for people living in displaced persons camps.

Deputy Secretary Zoellick joined the U.S. team in Abuja, led by Ambassador Cameron Hume, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires in Sudan. This team has been working intensively with the AU mediators and the parties. Zoellick was accompanied by Jendayi E. Frazer, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, and Roger Winter, Special Representative for Sudan.

Remarks by Deputy Secretary Zoellick
--05/05/06  Briefing on Abuja Peace Agreement for Darfur
--05/02/06  Conference Call With Reporters on Sudan Peace Talks
--04/30/06  Status of Darfur Peace Negotiations in Abuja

Press Releases
--05/08/06  Remarks by President Bush on the Peace Agreement in Sudan
--05/08/06  Darfur Peace Agreement
--05/08/06  Humanitarian Situation in Darfur
--05/08/06  Highlights of Darfur Peace Agreement
--05/05/06  Statement on Darfur Peace Agreement


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