While the normalization of diplomatic relations between Chad and Sudan and the signing of a cease fire and framework for peace negotiations between the Sudan government and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) are being heralded as critical steps towards peace in Darfur, there is still a long way to travel to resolving the ongoing crisis in Darfur, writes Wangari Maathai, 2004 Nobel Peace Laureate, founder of the Green Belt Movement and a co- founder of the Nobel Women's Initiative.
Indeed, there is reason to be skeptical of achieving a comprehensive peace agreement for Darfur. Conflict in Darfur persists seven years on, with several failed attempts at peace. Many analysts noted that the 2006 Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA), signed by just the government and a single rebel faction, was dead before it was even concluded.
Under the leadership of Djibril Bassolé, the former foreign minister of Burkina Faso, the on-going peace talks in Doha must remedy the mistakes of the DPA to avoid another failure - namely ensuring the process is inclusive and consultative, rather than focusing on signatures in a quick time frame. The most notable and critical missing link are Sudanese women.