An Analytical Vision of the Strategy of Sudanese Relations with South Sudan

Dr. Yassir M. Alobaid

In developing their foreign policy strategies, countries need to be methodological and normative. The methodology aims towards the foundations of our foreign relations, which must be based on the interests and security of states, not the interests of governments. National security is linked to the survival and demise of states. Relative importance if it can benefit, interests and harm, and it is true that there are countries that are ranked first in the criterion of external importance and take priority through the exchange of interests as the state of South Sudan concerning Sudan in terms of strategy. Its goals are clear and its strategic visions do not change the situation and symptoms. From a security point of view, the adult countries put strategies within their foreign policy goals that preserve their survival from extinction.

From an economic point of view, countries place food security within their foreign policies, and this requires attracting foreign investments, developing agriculture and industry, exchanging benefits, and cooperating on development and maintaining national security. Between the two countries, as in the case of Sudan with the country of South Sudan To Sudan, which was embodied in the successive visits of the Vice-President of the Transitional Sovereign Council, Lieutenant- General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo?

In the past, wars and conflicts dominated the relations between Sudan and South Sudan. But after the fall of the previous regime, which ruled for a long time, the situation is moving towards positive changes. What this means is that both parties will benefit within the framework of a special strategic relationship between the peoples of the two countries and this relationship has no limits from the perspective of common interests between peoples, especially since a special relationship has always been between Sudan and South Sudan, but it was rarely positive. Until 2011, the two countries constituted a common state that was shaken by a bloody civil war over three decades that ended with the negotiations and the Naivasha peace agreement in 2005, and then the referendum of Southern Sudan that led to the independence of the south as a sovereign state

The need for a good relationship will bring about the desired transformation. “Both countries need each other.

These improved relations are showing their effect through mutual visits. Both countries emphasize working as mediators to resolve disputes in the other country – not least because they have a significant influence on the opposition movement that is there,” says Rosalind Mardesen, former special delegate to the European Union to Sudan.

Mutual Mediation

In Juba, peace talks took place between the Sudanese rebels and the government. The Government of Southern Sudan is acting as a mediator. And there was the first breakthrough: both sides agreed to a cease-fire. Currently, there is a “golden opportunity” to end the conflict, Mardsen asserts. On the other hand, the government in Khartoum declared that it was ready to act as a guarantor of the peace agreement in South Sudan. A short while ago, the presidents of Uganda and Sudan met with Salva Kiir and Riek Machar in Uganda to push forward the formation of a unity government in southern Sudan. “This shows that even the new Sudanese government after the glorious December revolution takes responsibility seriously and makes a positive contribution so that South Sudan can resolve outstanding issues, especially since there are open borders and new opportunities

Both sides hope for better economic relations: Sudan is suffering from a severe economic crisis. High food prices and increasing inflation, but there is relative stability and great opportunities for exploiting the vast resources that Sudan enjoys, and there are great opportunities for trade between the two countries, especially since there are more than 90 commodities that can go to the south. The world, after six years of civil war, the situation has become more stable and now both countries hope that South Sudan will start oil exports. The only pipeline for this passes through the north, so that Sudan will also benefit from the fees for oil transit through its territory, refining through the various refineries in Sudan, and the network of oil pipelines extending from the Unity oil fields to Sudan’s ports, such as Port Sudan and Bashaer, and the opening of the borders again will contribute to the development of border trade between the two countries and show the volume of Hopes.

Some voices in Sudan and South Sudan dream in the long term of establishing a confederation between the two countries. Such rapprochement appeared after the difficulty achieved independence in 2011, which is not possible. Will this dream come true? This remains subject to the stability of the new friendship. It also depends on the development of the situation in Sudan, especially since the new transitional government is keen to build bridges of communication, and the visit of the Vice-President of the Transitional Sovereign Council, Lieutenant-General Mohamed Dagalo to Juba last week, confirms the keenness of the leadership in Sudan to strengthen the relationship with the state of South Sudan economically, commercially, security and politically.

Last week, the President of South Sudan, Salva Kiir Mayadret, invited the Vice-President of the Sudanese Sovereignty Council, Lieutenant-General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo “Hemedti” to participate in the cabinet meeting held on Wednesday. Yes, Ibrahim is on an official visit, and the head of the Sovereign Council, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, issued on Monday a decision assigning Ibrahim the position of the Ministry of Defense, who accompanied the delegation, as well as representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Defense, the Armed Forces, Rapid Support and the General Intelligence Service.

General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo and his companions held talks with officials in southern Sudan on various issues to assess the progress made in implementing the agreement, especially the main items including security arrangements, borders, and issues of trade exchange.

The Presidential Adviser for Security Affairs, Tut Gulwak, said in a press statement that the visiting Sudanese official listened to the views and explored ways through which the graduation, deployment, and unification of the forces would be expedited. Sudani met Wednesday to discuss issues related to peace and security in both South Sudan and Sudan.

In the same context, Hemedti met with the Vice President of South Sudan, Riek Machar, and they discussed joint relations and the path of implementing the peace agreement in southern Sudan, especially security arrangements.

It is noteworthy that Hemedti led the mediation in the negotiation processes between the southern parties, representing Sudan, and crowned his efforts with the formation of the national unity government, and the opposition leader, Riek Machar, assuming the position of the first deputy in it, in addition to the integration of forces. The opposition factions participated in training camps, within the framework of the formation of the unified forces of South Sudan, as well as the formation of Parliament.

Hemedti, who is the head of the High Committee to Follow up on the Implementation of the Peace Agreement in South Sudan, led a high-level delegation, the visit of the Vice-President of the Sovereignty Council and the accompanying delegation to Juba to see the progress of the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement for South Sudan, especially concerning the implementation of the security arrangements clause. The Sudanese government had sponsored negotiations with the parties to the South in 2018, which led to the signing of a document that activates a collapsed agreement signed years ago.

Lieutenant-General Dagalo led the mediation in the negotiation processes between the southern parties, representing the Government of Sudan, where Khartoum’s efforts to form a government of national unity were crowned, and the opposition leader, Riek Machar, assumed the position of the first deputy in the Juba government, and the forces of the opposition factions were integrated into training camps.

The visit confirms the keenness of the two countries to strengthen the relations between them through interests, looking at them from a strategic perspective and working to solve problems first, as well as emphasizing the understanding of the two leaderships, represented by the interest of the Vice-President of the Sovereign Council, Lieutenant-General Mohamed. The issue of security arrangements, especially since the invitation was submitted by the President of the State of South Sudan, Lieutenant-General Salva Kiir Mayardit.

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