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Powell to Visit Kenya to Add Momentum to Sudan Peace Talks - 2003-10-19


U.S. officials say Secretary of State Colin Powell will visit Kenya this week to try to add momentum to peace talks aimed at ending Sudan's two-decade-long civil conflict. Mr. Powell is due in Kenya Tuesday, after taking part in the APEC summit in Bangkok.

The Bush administration has made peace in Sudan a foreign policy priority, and a top U.S. official says Mr. Powell will visit the Kenyan-mediated peace talks in the town of Navaisha, northwest of Nairobi, to give a further boost to a peace process said to be nearing a successful conclusion.

Representatives of the Islamic government in Khartoum and mainly-Christian southern rebels of the Sudan People's Liberation Army resumed talks last Friday on final details of a plan to share power and revenue from the country's growing oil industry.

They signed an agreement last year for a six-year period of autonomy for the south, leading to a referendum on the rebel-controlled region's political future.

Mr. Powell, who is due in Kenya Tuesday, will also hold talks with government officials in Nairobi, before going on to Madrid to attend an international donors conference for Iraq.

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