News / Africa

Sudan's President Urges Armed Groups, Political Parties to Talk

Sudan President Omar al-Bashir speaks to the media in state house in capital Juba during his visit to South Sudan, Jan. 6, 2014.
Sudan President Omar al-Bashir speaks to the media in state house in capital Juba during his visit to South Sudan, Jan. 6, 2014.
Reuters
— Sudan's president called on armed groups and all political parties on Monday to meet and discuss ways of improving the country, but stopped short of promising a constitutional overhaul that was forecast by a senior member of his party.
 
President Omar Hassan al-Bashir has had to wrestle with a sharp drop in oil revenues, the main source of government income, and rising inflation after losing the bulk of his active oilfields following the secession of South Sudan in 2012.
 
Subsidy cuts and other austerity measures brought in last September to cope with the crisis led to the capital's worst streets protests in years, adding to the turmoil in a country also fighting rebels in southern and western border regions.
 
Rabie Abdelati, a senior member of Bashir's ruling National Congress Party earlier said Bashir would use a live television address on Monday to call for opposition groups to help redraw the constitution and join the government.
 
Bashir did say political parties should join dialog on the constitution, but did not go further.
 
“We call for a broad dialogue that includes all political parties and even holders of arms,” he told an audience that included the leaders of the country's main opposition parties.
 
Sudanese media had printed a series of articles in the past week, counting down to the speech, reporting government officials had said it would include significant reforms.
 
The United States imposed sanctions on Sudan in 1997 over alleged human rights violations and support for “international terrorism”, then strengthened the penalties in 2006 over Khartoum's festering conflict with rebels in Darfur.
 
The country's isolation deepened when the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for Bashir on charges of orchestrating war crimes and genocide in Darfur.
 
The president, a former army officer, has ruled Sudan since coming to power in a bloodless 1989 coup backed by Islamists and the powerful army.
 
He has pledged to step down next year after presidential and parliamentary elections. No date has been set.

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid