Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir told supporters the Darfur conflict was over as he announced the release of 57 Darfur fighters a day after inking a ceasefire and initial peace deal with some rebels.
"Now the crisis has finished in Darfur. Now the war is finished in Darfur ... We must start fighting the war for development," Bashir said at a rally in the capital of North Darfur in a recording of the speech heard by Reuters.
Bashir agreed a temporary ceasefire with Darfur's rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) in Doha on Tuesday and signed an agreement committing Sudan to reaching a final peace deal with the rebels by March 15.
Other Darfur armed groups have rejected the deal, and the agreement came almost exactly a year after the last Khartoum/JEM ceasefire which the fighters said broke down in a day.
Bashir's government on Wednesday said it freed 57 JEM fighters, half the total number of men imprisoned by Khartoum after being implicated in the rebel force's shock attack on the capital in 2008.
The releases were promised as part of the new JEM accord.
ReutersLast Mod: 24 Şubat 2010, 22:19