Workshop on Emergency Governance: From a Comparative Constitutional Perspective

The Max Planck Foundation continues its support for constitutional reform in Sudan.

The Foundation, in cooperation with Saint Joseph University of Beirut, held a workshop in Beirut (Lebanon) from 10 to 12 July 2023. Sudanese stakeholders (professors, political party leaders and civil society activist) gathered to delve into the legal aspects of the situation prevailing in Sudan since the outbreak of the armed conflict on 17 April 2023. The workshop also provided a platform to discuss the future governmental order which could follow a sustainable cease-fire. The workshop took place in a hybrid format. 18 participants were present in Beirut and more than 40 participants joined online. Although direct participation was limited due to travel restrictions by some neighboring countries of Sudan, the participation reflected the plurality of political views and aspirations in Sudan.

For the first time since the beginning of the armed conflict in Sudan, the workshop provided the main Sudanese political parties with an opportunity to discuss constitutional issues in Sudan and the composition, functions, and duration of the upcoming transitional government. The first day of the workshop focused on different experiences made in other countries with regards to governance in times of armed confrontations. Participants identified the various solutions and the extent of external involvement as being quite diverse. Day two was dedicated to the responsibility of state and non-state actors for the violation of international law standards during the armed conflict. The question of recognition of the acting military government by foreign states and international organisations and the cooperation between them was also debated. The workshop concluded with a discussion on the potential composition and functions of the upcoming transitional government in Sudan.

The workshop highlighted the legal requirements for the de facto government and opened a discussion on the necessary steps to establish a transitional government that can ensure peace and respect for the rule of law and set the stage for developing a permanent constitution.

The three-day workshop in Beirut was implemented with the generous financial assistance of the German Federal Foreign Office within the framework of the project ‘Support to the Constitutional and Comprehensive Legal Reform Process in the Republic of Sudan’.