Sudan withdraws from Darfur peace talks in move called 'declaration of war'

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Fighters from the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) at an undisclosed location in Sudan's western Darfur region. / AFP/Stuart Pric

DOHA, Qatar – A Sudanese official says his government has withdrawn from peace talks with Darfur rebel groups, but it is still committed to making peace.

Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir threatened to call off the talks in Qatar and return negotiations to Sudan if agreement was not reached by Thursday, and he carried out his threat.

Chief government negotiator Ghazi Salaheddine says the Sudanese delegation will leave for Khartoum on Friday.

Ahmed Hussain Adam, a rebel spokesman, described the move as “a declaration of war” in remarks to Al-Jazeera TV.

Last minute disagreements foiled a goal to reach an accord by the end of the year.

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