30 September 2021

Marking Adoption by Sudan of Historical Constitutional Document, Secretary-General Highlights Milestones in Peace Process, Urges Support for Transitional Government

Following are UN Secretary‑General António Guterres’ remarks at the High‑level Side Event on Sudan, today:

Welcome to this virtual High‑level Side Event on Sudan.  I thank Foreign Minister Eriksen Søreide [of Norway] for co‑hosting this meeting.

Two years ago, we gathered here to celebrate the adoption of Sudan’s historic constitutional document and to express our solidarity and support to the new transitional Government, led by Prime Minister [Abdalla Adam] Hamdok.  Today, we come together to recognize the remarkable achievements and resilience of the Sudanese people, and its transitional Government, as they chart a new future together.

We are also here to highlight the importance of the international community investing in these vital efforts through concrete action, and delivery of pledges.  That’s the driving objective of this meeting – to seek and affirm global engagement and support for the Sudanese people.

Sudan has reached important milestones.  Despite the challenges, democratic governance and peacemaking efforts have advanced.  The Juba Peace Agreement, signed almost a year ago, paves the way for ending Sudan’s long‑standing and devastating conflicts.  As part of the nationally owned peace process, important work is under way to implement the Agreement and to reach a deal with non‑signatory armed movements.

Sudan has also undertaken ambitious economic reforms, culminating in the Decision Point of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries initiative.  This will allow a measure of relief from Sudan’s unsustainable debt burden and free up much‑needed resources from the international financial institutions.  The international community must do everything possible to help advance these and other efforts.

Last June, the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in the Sudan UNITAMS) was created to provide a new basis for our support.  Today, the Mission, United Nations country team, and the entire United Nations family remain fully committed to the success of Sudan’s political transition, socioeconomic recovery and the achievement of sustainable peace and inclusive development.

Looking ahead, vital institutions such as the Transitional Legislative Council will be crucial.  The drafting of a constitution and setting the path for elections represent significant opportunities for further progress.  Women’s inclusion and meaningful participation will benefit the future of all Sudanese.

Sudan continues to confront complex security challenges.  The attempted coup d’état – which I condemn once again – is a reminder of persistent threats.  It underscores the importance of undertaking all efforts to protect civilians, strengthen human rights and provide safety and security for all.  The roll‑out of the Family Support Programme will help build on the sweeping and transformational economic reforms, as will measures to protect the most vulnerable.  While we see improved access in some areas, more than 13 million people need humanitarian assistance.

I welcome the transitional Government’s commitment to extend critical assistance efficiently and equitably.  Greater investment will be essential to help people transition to more sustainable livelihoods, expanding basic services and social protection.  And, for that, the support of the international community is essential.

The transitional Government and its partners, gathered here today, have the opportunity to help realize the vision of millions of Sudanese men and women – and most especially Sudanese youth – who risked their lives for democracy and peace.  We have an obligation to support these efforts.

This high‑level event is a demonstration of our abiding commitment to your Government, to the transition and to Sudan’s future.  We encourage you to stay the course and continue working with your partners in steering Sudan on a successful road ahead.  And I encourage the international community to do its part and be with you and the Sudanese people every step of the way.

Thank you very much to all of you.

For information media. Not an official record.