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S. Sudan president sacks foreign affairs minister

July 17, 2018 (JUBA) - South Sudan President Salva Kiir on Tuesday sacked the foreign affairs minister, Deng Alor Kuol and appointed Nhial Deng Nhial, formerly a special advisor, as the new minister.

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Deng Alor Kuol (File photo)

A decree on the state-owned TV gave no reasons for Alor’s sacking.

A member of a group of former political detainees, Alor was known for his critical views over the slow implementation for of the August 2015 peace agreement by parties involved in the country’s civil war.

It remains unclear whether his divergent views led to his removal by the president.

In October 2007, Alor, a member of the Ngok Dinka ethnic group, was appointed foreign minister of Sudan, replacing fellow Southern Sudanese politician Lam Akol, in what was seen as an attempt to appease the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).

Alor had previously been minister of cabinet affairs in Khartoum’s national unity government. However, after the independence of South Sudan in July 2011, he briefly served as foreign affairs minister until he was removed and later appointed cabinet affairs minister.

In December 2013, Alor was one of 10 senior SPLM officials arrested on orders of President Kiir for attempting a coup, but later released.