The commander-in-chief of the Sudanese army stated that they had only “accepted in principle” the IGAD initiative to stop the war and emphasized that they did not send a delegation to Juba.
South Sudan, IGAD, the Trilateral Mechanism, and the Quad announced a meeting in Juba of the Sudanese warring parties to negotiate a permanent ceasefire that would pave the way for a return to the negotiating table and the resumption of the political process.
In an interview with U.S.-funded TV Alhurra, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan said that there were several initiatives to stop the war, which has affected the Sudanese people and the region. He added that they received an initiative from the IGAD countries through “our brothers in South Sudan,” and “in principle,” they welcomed this initiative.
“But we did not appoint a representative, and we did not send a delegation (to Juba),” he further stressed.
He also said that the RSF leader did not agree to send a representative to Juba.
The United Nations, African Union, IGAD, the UN’s five permanent members and the Arab League called for the immediate resumption of the political process, through dialogue and negotiations to establish a transitional civilian-led government.
Al-Burhan questioned Hemetti’s recent remarks that he wanted to restore democracy in Sudan and asked how a tribal militia could talk about restoring democracy.
“We know the objectives of the RSF and what their purposes are. They want to take over this country. We know very well what their intentions are and who they were negotiating with,” he added.
He went on to say that he thought the RSF leadership accepted the merger, but later it became clear to him that their real intention was not to merge. He reiterated the need for the “demise of the Rapid Support Forces either by negotiations” leading to their integration into the national army “or fighting them.”
On Friday, both sides accused each other of violating the ceasefire, and the fighting continued in Khartoum and the outskirts of the capital.
Al-Burhan’s rhetoric during the interview seemed critical towards the signatories of the political framework agreement, which is aimed at restoring transitional civilian rule, but he did not take a clear stance against them.
On Saturday morning, the Sudan Armed Forces spokesman issued a statement saying that the army thwarted “a failed attempt to seize power by a rebel force and full political cover with the aim of hijacking the Sudanese state in favour of a one-man rule project”.
The statement did not talk about any military developments in the country.
Al-Burhan said that the reason why the Rapid Support Forces controlled a number of strategic sites in the capital was that they were assigned to guard them.
He also reiterated that the presence of the RSF fighters in residential neighborhoods is hindering their efforts to eradicate it but stressed that it is only a matter of time.