African Interfaith Group Calls on International Community to Honor Pledges to Sudan

February 16, 2007

Source: World Faith News

KHARTOUM, Sudan/GENEVA, 16 February 2007 (LWI)--After a visit to Sudan which included discussions with political and religious leaders in Khartoum and Juba, an African interfaith delegation has called on the international community to honor their political and financial pledges to sustain Sudan's peace process.

"Peace in Sudan will be the base for stability and peace for the whole region and Africa," the delegation of religious leaders representing the Inter-Faith Action for Peace in Africa (IFAPA) said in a statement following their January 9-14 visit. The delegation, led by Rev. Dr Ishmael Noko, general secretary of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and convenor of IFAPA, said the people they met including community-based women and youth groups, had emphasized that the conflict in the Sudan "was clearly not a religious one but rather political."

Other delegation members included Mr Prabhudas Pattni, secretary general of the Hindu Council of Africa; the Mufti of Rwanda, Sheikh Swalleh Habimana; Ms Margaret Arach Orech of the Landmine Survivors Network (Uganda); and IFAPA coordinator, Sheikh Saliou Mback. Representatives of the Sudan Council of Churches and the host organization, the Sudan Inter-Religious Council (SIRC), joined the delegation inside Sudan. Established in 2002, IFAPA comprises representatives of Africaâs inter-religious councils and networks, working together to promote peace on the continent.

Discussions in Khartoum and Juba focused on the difficulties related to the implementation of the peace processes in Sudan including the January 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), signed between the Government of Sudan and the Sudan Peopleâs Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), the May 2006 Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) between the government and the Sudan Liberation Movement and accords with insurgent groups in eastern Sudan.