CAIRO — Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned Sudanese leaders on Wednesday that the United States would impose a travel ban on anyone who threatens to derail Sudan’s fragile democratic transition.
The announcement comes two days after Sudan’s two ruling generals, Abdel-Fattah Burhan and Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, and his main pro-democracy group, the Forces for the Declaration of Freedom and Change, signed an “agreement- frame”. see his military withdrawal from power and the establishment of a new civilian-led transitional government. Various other political parties and organizations also signed the agreement.
In a statement released Wednesday morning, Blinken welcomed Monday’s agreement, brokered by the United States, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom. He then added that a travel ban would be imposed on anyone “considered responsible or complicit in undermining the democratic transition in Sudan”.
Sudan’s framework agreement appears to offer only the outlines of how Sudan will resume its fragile progress towards democracy, as major political players have refused to sign the agreement. The agreement also sidestepped thornier issues around transitional justice and the implementation of military reform.
The UN special envoy for Sudan, Volker Perthes, called the political framework agreement “an important breakthrough”.
But in a video briefing from Khartoum to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, he warned that “critical contentious issues still need to be addressed in the final deal.”
These include reforming the security sector and merging rival forces, ensuring transitional justice, and implementing a peace agreement signed in Juba in 2020 by Sudan’s transitional government and several armed groups.
Perthes said the UN would also like to have an exchange in the next phase of the talks on the economic and development priorities of a new government.
He warned that this week’s encouraging progress on the political path “may still be derailed by challenges and spoilers”. As a final agreement draws closer, Perthes said, “those who do not see their interests promoted by a political settlement may step up attempts to undermine the process.”
Several former rebel leaders, who have formed their own political bloc, are absent from the agreement. Also missing are Sudan’s sprawling pro-democracy Resistance Committees, which have refused to negotiate with Sudanese military leaders.
“Recognizing the fragility of democratic transitions, the United States will hold spoilers accountable — whether military or political actors,” Blinken said. New negotiations for a more inclusive agreement should take place soon.
Sudan has been in turmoil since the country’s top military figure, General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, led a coup in October 2021 that upended the country’s previous democratic transition after three decades of Omar el’s autocratic rule. -Bechir.