2000-2010: Peace Wrapping Up the Decade?

2000 saw the conflict between Bashir and Turabi continue, and at the end of the year Bashir was re-elected president for another four year term. Bashir proposed a move toward democracy and the creation of a secular state in order to achieve reconciliation with the SPLM; Turabi protested vehemently to the latter. Ongoing IGAD meetings in February, May and December were fruitless.

In 2001 China signed an oil agreement with Khartoum. By oil had become a major issue in the war; Talisman Oil Corporation oil production levels reached 200,000 barrels per day, generating a revenue of US$400 million, the equivalent of 40 percent of oil revenues, and vital revenues for the government to pursue the war with the rebels.

In mid-2002 there seemed to be a breakthrough in the peace talks. The government agreed to allow a referendum in the South after a six-year interim period, and the constitution would be re-written to ensure that Sharia could be used in the North but it would not infringe on the rights of non-Muslims in the South. Despite this success, however, US President Bush signed into being the Sudan Peace Act, under whose terms the President could impose sanctions on Sudan if they did not believe Khartoum was serious about the peace process. Predictably, Sudan reacted furiously.

Numerous protocols and agreements led to the formation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005, namely: The Machakos Protocol (or Chapter I) of 2002; The Protocol on Power Sharing (or Chapter II), signed in 2004; The Agreement on Wealth Sharing (or Chapter III) of 2004; The Protocol on the Resolution of the Conflict in Abyei Area (or Chapter IV) of 2004; The protocol on the Resolution of the Conflict in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States (or Chapter V) of 2004; The Agreement on Security Arrangements (or Chapter VI), signed in 2003; The Permanent Ceasefire and Security Arrangements Implementation Modalities and Appendices (or Annexure I) of 2004; and The Implementation Modalities and Global Implementation Matrix and Appendices (or Annexure II) of 2004. The raison d’être of the CPA was to end the second Sudanese Civil War develop democratic governance countrywide and share oil revenues. Additionally, it also set a timetable by which the South would have a referendum on independence, namely 9 January 2011.The signing of the CPA was facilitated by IGAD.

The SPLM withdrew from the government of national unity in October 2007, citing violation by the North of the terms of the CPA, inter alia, failure to withdraw over 15,000 troops from southern oilfields and failed to implement the Protocol on Abyei. The SPLM noted that this was not a return to war, and rejoined the government by 13 December 2007. Northern Sudanese troops finally left Southern Sudan on 8 January 2008.