A senior Sudanese official announced on Sunday that the African Union (AU) had adjourned the seventh round of peace talks between the Sudanese government and the Darfur rebels, which was originally due on Monday in the Nigerian capital of Abuja.
Majzoub al-Khalifa, Sudanese presidential advisor and head of the government's delegation to the Darfur peace talks, said in a press statement that the AU had informed him of the postponement and that the new date of the talks would be announced later.
Majzoub added that the postponement came as the AU was trying to persuade different factions of the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM), one of the two main Darfur rebel groups, to unite their positions for the peace talks.
The senior Sudanese official re-asserted that the Sudanese government was "completely ready" to enter the new round of peace talks at any time.
Majzoub also expressed his hope that the adjournment of the talks would not last long.
Rebels took up arms in the Darfur region against the central government in February, 2003, accusing Khartoum of negligence.
Rounds of talks under the auspices of the AU in Abuja have so far failed to strike a peace deal. The last round of negotiations came to no breakthrough due to the split of SLM.
(Xinhua News Agency November 21, 2005)