Omar al-Bashir Arrives For Talks in South Sudan

Sudan President Omar al-Bashir is visiting South Sudan today amid tight security . He heads a large delegation including the ministers of defense, interior and foreign affairs, and several high-ranking government officials. His visit is in response to an invitation from South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir who visited Khartoum last October.

The two presidents are expected to hold a one-to-one meeting to discuss the agreements signed between two countries last year and the key outstanding issues such as  the Abyei referendum and the disputes of some border areas, including Mile 14.

The visit comes just three days before a meeting of the Joint Political and Security Committee, which will establish a mechanism to settle conflicts with rebel groups. Sudan and South Sudan are shortly set to open ten crossing points on the border to allow free circulation of people and goods between the two countries.

South Sudan has just announced it is resuming production of oil following months of negotiations, but initial production is expected to be between 150,000 and 200,000 barrels per day. The first quantities of oil are expected to be exported through Port Sudan at the end of May.

Source: Government of Ethiopia (Addis Ababa)

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