Home | News    Thursday 2 January 2014

S. Sudan rebel delegation in Addis Ababa for talks


By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

January 1, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) – The South Sudanese government and a delegation from the group that rebelled last month are due to start peace talks in Ethiopia under a peace proposal brokered by other East African countries.

South Sudan ex-vice president Riek Machar now leads a new rebel group (Getty)

The talks are being mediated by regional bloc, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in an effort to defuse political tensions in the new nation, which spilled over into the army on 15 December.

A delegation representing South Sudan’s former vice-president Riek Machar arrived in the capital, Addis Ababa late on Wednesday, sources told Sudan Tribune.

The group is believed to be led by Taban Deng Gai - the former Unity state governor who was sacked last year - and four other members. A further seven members of the rebel delegation is due to arrive on Thursday.

Machar, who served as the vice president of South Sudan from 2005 until he was sacked in July last year, had held up the peace process by refusing to hold face-to-face talks with President Salva Kiir.

The two sides confirmed they were sending a negotiating teams to Addis Ababa after Ethiopian foreign minister and chair of IGAD ministerial council, Tedros Adhanom travelled to South Sudan on Monday.

Peace talks are expected to open on Thursday as the South Sudanese government’s delegation had not arrived in Ethiopia by Wednesday evening. Juba said that is has appointed a 14-member delegation to attend the talks.

The delegation representing Kiir’s government is led by former foreign minister Nhial Deng Nhial, current information minister Michael Makuei and health minister Riek Gai Kok, as well as security officials including generals. They are expected to arrive in Addis Ababa on Thursday.

The South Sudanese leader is also sending opposition politicians with the delegation. Mediators told Sudan Tribune that the first step of the talks will focus on bringing about a ceasefire.

Machar, however, has so far insisted that his concerns need to be discussed before ceasefire can be implemented, arguing that mechanisms for monitoring the ceasefire need to be put in place. The body in charge of following up the implementation any deal must also be agreed, the former vice president has said.

President Kiir has accused Machar of attempting to stage a coup against him but this has been denied by all those involved, including the eleven senior members of the ruling SPLM who were detained soon after the fighting within the army began on the eveing of 15 December.

Reports that some people in capital Juba were attacked on the basis of their ethnicity led to significant parts of the South Sudanese army rebelling in Jonglei, Unity and Upper Nile states.

The United Nations says that at least 1,000 people are believed to have been killed and over 200,000 people displaced by the fighting which is continuing in some areas, although the capital, Juba, has been quiet for over two weeks.

However, Machar said on Wednesday that his forces are advancing Juba after recapturing Bor, the capital of Jonglei state. Bor was first captured by forces under Gen Peter Gadet who mutinied soon after the clashes in Juba but was retaken by the South Sudanese army (SPLA).

South Sudan’s government says it has sent thousands of troops to regain control of Bor amidst fears that the ongoing fighting could overshadow the Addis Ababa talks.


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  • 2 January 2014 08:44, by bolingo

    Bravo Dr. Machar, your efforts clearly shows that dictatorship and ethnic cleansing is unacceptable.
    Kirr and his husband m7 can either negotiate or face defeat, Bor is now under control and Juba is next, where he run?

    repondre message

    • 2 January 2014 10:22, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

      Mayom County Girl & Associates,
      You write not only to inform but educate a wide range of readers across the digital world on the subject matter, not only your targeted audience like some Nuer, though not all, who will agree with the content without digesting its authenticity and source. In Juba, the soldiers killed on duty, guarding armory are not all Dinka....

      repondre message

      • 2 January 2014 10:22, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

        ...but including what Riek and his destructive forces claim "the sold-out Nuer" because they failed to participate in the failed coup attempt. The misconception that most Nuer hold is that they can impose Riek on South Sudanese to be the President of RSS at any cost so long as Bor Town continues falling victim of Riek’s political endeavor.

        repondre message

        • 2 January 2014 10:23, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

          What we are observing closely is lack of international concern about telling Riek not to order his forces attack innocents souls/Dinka who took refuge in UNMISS compound across the country. In Juba, no government forces is threatening to attack Nuer in the two UNMISS compounds but Nuer are doing the opposite. In Juba, some of them/men are coming out of the UNMISS compound only to knife Dinka and..

          repondre message

          • 2 January 2014 10:24, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

            ... and run back to the UNMISS compound without any government forces threatening to kill anyone in the compound. This is what happening in Juba now. Looting in Juba (107) was carried out by the destructive forces of Riek who fled with him without considering the safety of their wives and innocent children who would not escape together with them to the bush, Bentiu or Lou.

            repondre message

            • 2 January 2014 10:25, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

              Nuer females roam Juba freely but some males not all, are ready to kill Dinka at strategic spot, hoping to run back to UNMISS compounds. We are looking forward that it must stop unless they want to prove that they’re the followers of Riek. Peace will certainly return to all corners of South Sudan but should not be at the expense of.....

              repondre message

              • 2 January 2014 10:25, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                killing innocent civilians, destroying government, public and private properties in Bor, Akobo, Malakal, Bentiu and above all mobilizing civilians on tribal dimensions to carry out military offensive on towns in order to assert political leadership as if general elections of 2015 is far from horizon.

                repondre message

                • 2 January 2014 10:26, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                  Whether political front is asserted or not for dialogue in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the reality is that no clear exit strategy for Riek and his two commanders (Peter Gadet & James Koang) because one tribe can never fight a government on this planet. They have to lay down arms, embrace peace and contest in elections.

                  repondre message

                  • 2 January 2014 10:26, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                    Riek’s struggle for political leadership has spiraled into military and tribal camps simply to avoid the upcoming elections of 2015 where campaigns would be based on track record, not what is so-called “warriors” taken entirely on tribal dimensions. Nuer alone can never defend militarily the three States where they hail from without support of Dinka and the other tribes of South Sudan.

                    repondre message

                    • 2 January 2014 10:27, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                      If some Nuer, like “white army”, claim to be warriors, why did they fail to wipe out SPLA/M from 1991-2002 when SPLA/M was still fighting guerilla warfare? Why did they fail to wipe out SAF from their land, as they are trying to do against Dinka in towns and UNMISS compounds, in order to liberate South Sudan and rule it without support of the other tribes?

                      repondre message

                      • 2 January 2014 10:27, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                        Why would Riek believe that “white army” including forces under James Koang of Division 4 would be able to exterminate the Dinka-led government of Cde. Salva Kiir Mayardit, protect the nation from foreign aggression and rule it without support of any Dinka and other tribes? Will South Sudan be ruled along tribal line?

                        repondre message

                        • 2 January 2014 10:28, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                          Why did Riek and his “white army” fail to make coup attempt to NCP-led government or pose this political question to Khartoum Islamic-led government when they were in the same bed from 1991 up to 2002? Why do Riek and his retarded army commanders believe that it would be possible to rule South Sudan along tribal line?

                          repondre message

                          • 2 January 2014 11:54, by LabotoNyom KobiYe

                            Popular opinion indicates that infrastructural development and service delivery is important regardless of regional and international effort to resolve the outstanding issues with Khartoum since 2005; but Riek Machar’s opinion indicates that eight years is enough for President Salva. He’s worried when will his turn to rule South Sudan come regardless of his track record and the upcoming elections?

                            repondre message

        • 2 January 2014 14:14, by Mayom County Boy

          there will be no ceasefire because stupid laboto nyom kobiye will be alive if cease fire was sign.
          only power sharing must be allow first
          war will continouse for a while , an till i fuck mrs loboto nyom kobiye out from Juba

          repondre message

    • 2 January 2014 13:00, by Bungachier 50

      Media war will earn you guys nothing. Let things happen in silence, and we will see who will live to tell the story.

      repondre message

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