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Maiwut state governor, Ethiopian officials discuss security and trade

The governor of South Sudan's Maiwut state, Maj. Gen. Bol Ruach Rom meeting a delegation from Ethiopia in Pagak (ST)
August 9, 2017 (MAIWUT) – The governor of South Sudan’s Maiwut state, Maj. Gen. Bol Ruach Rom Wednesday said he agreed with Ethiopian authorities to open border for trade and to prevent rebel presence in the border area.

The meeting which was held in Pagak took place after the capture the border town from the armed opposition fighters last Sunday. The governor was accompanied by military officers leading operations that captured the rebel headquarters.

In statements to Sudan Tribune after the meeting, Rom said the discussions with the Ethiopian authorities were productive, adding they came out with important decisions and plans of actions.

"One important decision the agreement allowing us to open border and resume normal bilateral activities. And this has been done. The two countries have agreed to deploy custom and immigration officers recognized by the leaderships of the two countries and the legitimate governments," Rom said.

"We also agreed that no illegal movement should be allowed," he further added.

The proposed move to open the border is expected to facilitate the transportation of goods and services between the two neighbouring countries.

Governor Rom explained that the meeting resolved that goods and services will now be crossing and passing through the border of the two countries with the knowledge of the legitimate authorities.

He repeated calls for the return of the civilians in neighbouring countries and those displaced in the neighbouring states to their homes to help in the rebuilding of the State.

He pledged that his administration would provide security and appealed to all the UN agencies, aid groups, regional and local organisations to return to Maiwut and support the affected population to regain their home areas.

Ethiopia currently hosts close to 300,000 South Sudanese refugees, most of whom fled after the conflict broke out in the world’s newest nation in December 2013, United Nations estimates show.