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Joint Communique
at the end of the Official Visit of
H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Africa
Khartoum, Sudan 4th - 6th February, 2003

1) H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma, in her capacity as chairperson of the Executive Council of Ministers of the African Union, and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Africa, paid an official visit to the Republic of Sudan from 4th - 6th February, 2003.

2) Her Excellency Dr. Dlamini Zuma was accompanied by Ambassador Said Djinnit, the Interim Commissioner of the African Union and a high ranking delegation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Africa, acting on the Resolution of the Central Organ dated 4 December 2002, mandating the Chairperson of the African Union and the Commission to take appropriate steps to assist in the efforts to defuse tension between the Sudan and Eritrea.

3) Both parties agreed to maintain regular contact and consultations in order to ensure the full implementation of Central Organ Resolution.

4) During her visit the South African Minister also held bilateral discussions with her counterpart H.E. Dr. Mustafa Osman Ismail, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Sudan, that focused on political, Economic, Commercial and Cultural issues of bilateral co-operation, and exchanged views on regional and international developments of common concern.

5) The South African Minister was fully briefed by her counterpart Dr. Mustafa Osman Ismail on the current political and economic situation in the Sudan, and ongoing plans and programmes aimed at achieving economic and social development. Her Excellency Dr. NC Dlamini Zuma was also apprised of the latest developments pertaining to the peace process and efforts exerted by the Government of Sudan to achieve a long lasting and sustainable peace settlement to the conflict in Southern Sudan.

6) The two Ministers initialed a joint Co-operation Framework Agreement in order to consolidate and foster bilateral relations in all fields of co-operation.

7) The two sides reiterated their full adherence to all international norms, conventions and practices, especially the principle of noninterference in internal affairs of other countries, respect of sovereignty, territorial integrity and peaceful settlement of disputes.

8) The two sides further reiterated their resolve to combat all forms of terrorism and adherence to resolutions of the United Nations in this regard.

9) The Ministers commended the efforts of the African Union to resolve conflicts and tension in Africa, in particular in the Horn of Africa, the Great Lakes Region and West Africa through peaceful means and commended peace efforts in Angola and Burundi. They also asserted the importance of regional co-operation in Africa to achieve social-economic development.

10) The two Ministers welcomed the decision of the African Union that the AU becomes seized with the peace process in the region.

11) On the Somali question the two parties expressed their preoccupation with the situation in Somalia and called upon all Somali leaders to fully demonstrate their commitment to the Eldorit National Reconciliation Conference.

12) The Sudanese side commended the invaluable efforts of South Africa in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the signing of the Pretoria Agreement on December 16, 2002. The two parties called upon the Government and all faction leaders to demonstrate their commitment to the Pretoria Agreement and exert every effort towards its implementation.

13) The Ministers welcomed the Linas-Marcoussis Accord signed by the parties in Cote d' Ivoire and expressed hope that the Accord leads to restoration of peace, stability and security in that country.

14) On the Middle East question the two parties emphasized their full support to the struggle of the Palestinian people and their legitimate right to have their own independent state and Jerusalem as its capital.

15) The Ministers reiterated the importance of the Declaration of the Central Organ of the African Union on the question of Iraq urging all parties to avoid using force and further reaffirmed the central role of the United Nations in any action aimed at maintaining and strengthening peace and international security.

16) During her stay Dr. Dlamini Zuma met with H.E. Prof. Moses Machar, Vice President of the Republic of the Sudan, Prof. Ibrahim Ahmed Omer, Secretary General of the National Congress and Dr. Ghazi Salah Eddin Atabani, Advisor to the President on Peace Affairs. During these meetings, Dr. Dlamini Zuma was further briefed on economic and political developments in Sudan, the peace process in Southern Sudan, as well as regional and international matters of mutual concern.

17) The South African Minister also met with the members of the Parliament Women Association and discussed issues of women development, exchange of experiences and skills for the development of woman in both countries.

18) H.E. Dr. Dlamini Zuma finally paid a courtesy call on H.E. President Omer Hassan Ahmed Al-beshir, President of the Republic of the Sudan, during which the President extended an official invitation to H.E. President Thabo Mbeki to visit the Sudan.

19) At the end of the visit H.E. Dr. Dlamini Zuma expressed her appreciation and profound gratitude to H.E. Dr. Mustafa Osman Ismail, the Government and people of Sudan for the warm reception and generous hospitality accorded to her Excellency and her delegation during their stay in Sudan.

20) H.E. Dr. Dlamini Zuma extended an invitation to Dr. Mustafa Osman Ismail to visit South Africa. The Sudanese Minister of Foreign Affairs accepted the invitation, the date of which will be conveyed through diplomatic channels.

Issued at Khartoum - Sudan on this day 6th of February 2003.

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