November 12, 2008
Sudan President Orders Darfur Cease-Fire
Sudanese President Omar Hassan Bashir says he's ordering a cease-fire with rebels based in Darfur and will move to disarm pro-government militias.
Bashir made the declaration Wednesday after receiving the recommendations of the Sudan People's Initiative, a Khartoum-backed plan that did not include any input from the key rebel group Justice and Equality Movement, the BBC reported.
Although past Darfur cease-fires have failed, some say Bashir's move holds out hope for the troubled region. One unnamed international observer told the BBC that it could be an attempt by Bashir to put pressure on rebel groups to sign onto a 2006 peace agreement, which most of them rejected.
It could also be an attempt by the president to convince the international community to defer the ICC case against him, the broadcaster said.