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South Sudan President meets visiting opposition leaders

President Kiir receives Deng Alor and John Luk Jok in Juba on 11 October 2018 (Photo Presidential Unit)
October 11, 2018 (JUBA) - President Salva Kiir met Thursday with two opposition leading members who are in Juba in a gesture of goodwill to show their commitment to the revitalized peace agreement signed on 12 September.

Next week the National Pre-Transitional Committee (NPTC) will hold its first meeting in Khartoum to discuss the implementation of the activities of the pre-transitional period.

The NPTC among others will discuss the protection of the opposition leaders when they return to Juba to take part in the transitional period activities.

However, against all odds, Deng Alor of the Former Detainees (FDs) group, Wednesday arrived in Juba where he was welcomed at the airport by a minister and met with presidential advisers.

On Thursday, President Kiir received him together with the Transport Minister and his friend John Luk Jok.

The meeting was also attended by the Presidential adviser and Chair of the government five-member team to the NPTC Tut Kew Gatluak who invited Alor to Juba.

In press statements after the meeting, the FDs leading member said the meeting discussed the implementation of the peace agreement.

He further reiterated the commitment of the FDs leadership to peace pact pointing that South Sudanese want to have peace and stability in the country.

"We are committed to the agreement. We feel and think that this agreement will be implemented by all the parties," Alor said.

he further stressed that his return to Juba demonstrated the FDs commitment to the peace agreement.

"Because of the determination of the parties and the people of South Sudan we will be able to overcome the difficulties ahead of us," he said.

Alor arrived in Juba after a meeting of the FDs leaders held in Nairobi to ratify the revitalized peace agreement. In a statement issued after the meeting, the group endorsed the agreement saying it was imperfect but added that it gives an opportunity to achieve the desired democratic reforms.

Also, Kiir received the leader of the opposition alliance Other Political Parties (OPP) Peter Mayen Majongdit who expressed his group’s commitment to the signed agreement their readiness to participate in its implementation.

For his part, Presidential adviser Gatluak confirmed that the NPTC will hold its first meeting in Khartoum next week.

The SPLM-IO and South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) delegations to the NPTC, declined an invitation to attend a meeting in Juba pointing that the committee meetings should be held outside the country as provided in the signed agreement.

The visit of the two opposition leaders to Juba is certainly well appreciated by the IGAD and the international community because it contributes to the confidence-building initiatives taken here and there to promote the peace agreement.

However, the IGAD recently denoted that the non-ratification of the revitalized agreement by the parliament and the non-release of all prisoners of war and political detainees and called to accelerate the implementation process.