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International | Peace treaties and agreements
Southern Sudan

The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), signed by the government in Khartoum and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M) in 2005, ended Africa’s longest-running civil war. According to the UN, the war, which erupted in 1983, was caused by disputes over resources, power, the role of religion in the state and self-determination. More than two million people died, four million were uprooted and some 600,000 people sought shelter beyond Sudan's borders as refugees.

Under the mediation of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the Government of the Sudan and the SPLM/A signed a series of six agreements, which together make up the CPA:

  • The Protocol of Machakos

Signed in Machakos, Kenya, on 20 July 2002, in which the parties agreed on a broad framework, setting forth the principles of governance, the transitional process and the structures of government as well as on the right to self-determination for the people of South Sudan, and on questions of state and religion.

  • The Protocol on security arrangements

Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 25 September 2003

  • The Protocol on wealth-sharing

Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 7 January 2004

  • The Protocol on Power-sharing

Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004

  • The Protocol on the resolution of conflict in southern Kordofan/Nuba Mountains and the Blue Nile States

Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004

  • The Protocol on the resolution of conflict in Abiye

Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 26 May 2004

A report in July 2007 by the International Crisis Group, however, claimed that the CPA was being “extensively undermined, primarily by the ruling National Congress Party (NCP). While international attention has focused on Darfur, albeit without much success, Sudan’s other brewing conflicts and the crucial implementation of the CPA are being largely ignored.” According to David Mozersky, the ICG’s Horn of Africa Project Director, “If the CPA fails – which is increasingly likely – Sudan can be expected to return to full-scale war, with devastating consequences for the entire region”.

Further reading: "Sudan's Comprehensive Peace Agreement: Beyond the Crisis", International Crisis Group, Africa Briefing No. 50, 13 March 2008  

On 11 February 2012, it was reported that Sudan and South Sudan had signed a non-aggression pact, agreeing to respect each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity.


On 5 May 2006, the Government of Sudan and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (the faction headed by Minni Minawi) signed the Darfur Peace Agreement. The peace agreement, which covers security, wealth-sharing and power-sharing, was the result of two years of painstaking negotiations mediated by the African Union (AU). However, two other major rebel groups – another faction of the SLA, led by Abd-al-Wahid Muhammed Nur, and the Justice and Equality Movement – refused to sign. The DPA failed to stop the fighting.

On 31 July 2007, the UN Security Council voted unanimously to adopt Resolution 1769 (see below), authorising a joint ("hybrid") mission of just under 20,000 African Union and UN peacekeepers as well as more than 6,000 police officers to Darfur. Operative paragraph 15 authorises the force, known as UNAMID, to "(i) protect its personnel, facilities, installations and equipment, and to ensure the security and freedom of movement of its own personnel and humanitarian workers, [and] (ii) support early and effective implementation of the Darfur Peace Agreement, prevent the disruption of its implementation and armed attacks, and protect civilians, without prejudice to the responsibility of the Government of Sudan." After the adoption of the resolution, China entered an explanation of vote, calling for "political settlement on the Darfur issue, committing to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sudan, and engaging each other through dialogue and consultation on an equal footing." In a press conference several days after the adoption of the resolution, a senior UN official stated that the force was planned to be a highly mobile, dynamic one, not confined to static bases, with robust rules of engagement under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. In addition to the standard armaments of infantry battalions, attack helicopters had been requested.

In August 2007, leaders from more than ten Darfur rebel groups held talks in Tanzania in search of a common position for peace talks with the Sudanese government. Representatives from all the invited groups attended the discussions, except those from the SLM faction led by Abd-al-Wahid Muhammed Nur. According to the BBC, they agreed on a common platform on issues such as power sharing, security, land, humanitarian affairs and compensation, but still needed to appoint a "leader" or "committee" to head up any future negotiations with Khartoum as well as to try to bring on side the rebel leaders who were left out of the deal. The UN reported the two Chairmen’s Conclusions (Dr Salim Ahmed Salim, the AU Special Envoy, and Jan Eliasson, the UN Special Envoy).

Eastern Sudan

In October 2006, a peace agreement was signed between the Government of Sudan and the Eastern Sudan Front (an alliance of the Beja Congress and Free Lions rebel groups) to resolve a conflict in the Eastern States (Red Sea, Gedarif, and Kassala). The conflict was said to have resulted from the dire economic and social conditions and political marginalization in the region. For nine years, the Eastern Front had waged a low-intensity conflict against the Government in Khartoum to protest against this state of affairs.

Further reading: Dorina Bekoe, "The Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement: Taking Stock and Moving Forward", United States Institute of Peace, Peace Brief, October 2007


There have been several agreements of reconciliation and normalisation of relations between Sudan and Chad, most recently:

  •  The Doha Agreement 3 May 2009

Further reading: "Sudan: Preventing Implosion", International Crisis Group, Africa Briefing No. 68, 17 December 2009 

Last updated: 12 February 2012

UN Security Council Resolution 1769
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Friday, 28 October 2016
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