(No. 109 - March 18, 2010 – 4:15 ET) The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement expressing Canada’s support for the framework agreement signed on March 18 between the Government of Sudan and the Liberation and Justice Movement, an alliance of rebel factions in Darfur:
“Canada welcomes the signing of the framework agreement, which includes a ceasefire, between the Government of Sudan and the Liberation and Justice Movement. Canada also reiterates its support of the framework agreement signed between the Government of Sudan and the Justice and Equality Movement in Doha on February 23. This latest agreement is another step toward a general political settlement and a key step toward a lasting peace in Darfur. Canada calls on all parties to negotiate in good faith and to achieve a final peace agreement.
“Canada is concerned over reports of renewed fighting in the Jebel Marra region between the Sudanese armed forces and rebel groups. Recently, the fighting has reportedly caused more than 200 deaths. It is essential for all parties to cease hostilities in order to diminish the hardship suffered by war-affected people in Darfur. The new agreement will contribute to a general peace settlement only if it is respected. Canada calls on all parties to honour their commitments under the agreements.
“Canada was present for the signing of the latest framework agreement, and Canadian representatives will remain in Doha for the general negotiations involving all parties under the auspices of the United Nations-African Union Joint Chief Mediator for Darfur, Djibrill Ypènè Bassolé. Canada appreciates the work of Mr. Bassolé and of the Government of Qatar.
“Canada calls on all parties to the conflict to continue working toward a sustainable, inclusive peace agreement that will resolve all of Darfur’s outstanding issues.”
Canada strongly supports the peacekeeping efforts in Sudan and the Darfur peace process, having invested $687 million in Sudan since 2006. Canada is the second-largest voluntary financial contributor to the hybrid African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur and has contributed approximately $40 million to support the Mission’s African police officers.
For more information on Canada’s engagement in Sudan, please consult Canada: Active in Sudan.
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