“Security Council members must not waste this chance to push for the acceleration of the ongoing post-referendum negotiations on oil,” said Dana Wilkins, campaigner at Global Witness. “Given the huge significance of oil revenues to the economies of both the north and south, and the fact that the current oil wealth-sharing agreement has been absolutely critical in keeping the peace for the last five years, brokering a new fair and transparent oil deal will be vital to ensure peace in Sudan after the referendum.”
Global Witness welcomes the United Kingdom’s recent announcement that Sudan will be a top priority for its presidency of the UN Security Council in November, and calls on it to make oil governance a theme of its presidency. There is no other single issue in Sudan which has such a large impact on whether the country’s future is war or peace.
A recent visit by a Sudanese trade delegation to London led to significant concerns among activists that business interests might be prioritized over human rights in the government’s diplomatic efforts in Sudan. “It is in the interests of all parties involved, including donors and investors, to ensure that an equitable oil deal is put in place before the referendum takes place,” said Wilkins. “Without it, genuine economic and political stability in Sudan will be impossible and a return to war all too inevitable.” In the 22 year civil war between north and south Sudan which lasted until 2005, two million people died and four in five southerners had to flee their homes.
For more information call Amy Barry in the UK on +44 7980664397 or Dana Wilkins in the US on +1 (202) 621 6687.