Sudan army kills leader of main Darfur rebel group

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Salma Turabi, daughter of longtime opposition leader Hassan Turabi, said she was at a gathering of mourners at Ibrahim’s home in Khartoum when police fired tear gas to disperse the crowd.

Sudan state television broadcast images of Khartoum residents outside military headquarters, waving Sudanese flags and celebrating the news of his death.

Ibrahim is believed to have recently returned to Sudan after years in exile in neighboring Libya, where he enjoyed the patronage of Moammar Gadhafi before the longtime Libyan dictator was ousted and killed in October. Sudanese officials said the JEM has been trying to regroup since losing Gadhafi’s reported support for the rebel movement.

Ibrahim once served in al-Bashir’s government before joining the rebellion. He refused to join a peace agreement signed in Qatar and backed by the African Union that was meant to provide a basis for a cease-fire, power sharing, equal distribution of wealth and compensation for displaced people.

“He completely refused to come to the negotiating table, he never joined the peace talks,” Ismail el-Haj Musa, Sudanese deputy speaker of the council of states, told the pan-Arab Al-Jazeera TV on Sunday. “He committed acts against the state.”

On Sunday, Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamad, Sudan’s interior minister, described the death of Ibrahim “as a message to all rebels and those carrying arms, calling on them to the negotiating table to resolve issues and reach a peaceful resolution for the best interest of the country,” according the semiofficial Sudan Media Center.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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