CAIRO (AP) — The Sudanese army and its rival paramilitary force resumed peace talks Thursday in a new push to end the nearly seven-month conflict between Sudan’s warring factions, Saudi Arabia said.
The revived talks between representatives from the Sudanese army, led by Abdel-Fattah Burhan, and the Rapid Support Force paramilitary, commanded by Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, are underway in the Saudi coastal city of Jeddah, the kingdom's foreign ministry said in a statement. The talks are being brokered by both Riyadh and Washington, the statement said.
The RSF and the army both confirmed on Wednesday that they would participate in the talks.
Sudan was plunged into chaos in mid-April, when simmering tensions between the military and the RSF exploded into open warfare in the capital, Khartoum, and other areas across the east African nation.
The conflict has reduced the capital, Khartoum, and other urban areas into battlefields, wrecking the country's already dilapidated infrastructure.
The previous peace talks were held in Jeddah earlier this year but broke down in late June. Washington and Riyadh accused both sides of failing to abide by cease-fire deals they had agreed to. Since April there have been at least 9 temporary cease-fire deals and all have foundered.
In its statement, the Saudi foreign ministry said it hoped the fresh negotiations will lead to another cease-fire agreement and also a political agreement that will “return security, stability and prosperity for Sudan and its people.”
More than 9,000 people have been killed in the conflict, according to the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data project, which tracks Sudan’s war.
The fighting has driven over 4.5 million people to flee their homes to other places inside Sudan and more than 1.2 million to seek refuge in neighboring countries, the U.N. migration agency says.