Home | News    Wednesday 25 December 2013

S. Sudan’s Kiir sets conditions for releasing political detainees


December 24, 2013 (JUBA) - South Sudanese president Salva Kiir says he will only release political detainees accused of participating in an alleged failed coup, if it can be proved that they were not responsible atrocities committed over the last week.

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President Salva Kiir announcing that SPLA forces had retaken Bor from Peter Gatdet troops, JUBA, on 24 DEC 2013, (Photo AFPTV Soundbite)

"Whenever I receive a call from some members of the international community, one of the things they tell me is to release political detainees", Kiir said his first address to South Sudanese members of parliament on Monday since the violence began on 15 December.

"I am ready for dialogue and to release [...] these people. I can pardon them if you can [show] me someone who would be held accountable for atrocities they have committed in this senseless war. If I leave them to just go, who would be held responsible?" Kiir asked.

The conflict, which began with a clash within the Presidential Guards of the South Sudanese army (SPLA), has spread to other parts of the country after senior military officers defected and have led mutinies against the government in Jonglei and Unity state.

Human Rights Watch and others have reported that many of the killings - the official figure has remained at around 500 the last week - have been along ethnic lines, despite the cause of the fighting being a political struggle within the ruling party.

President Kiir said Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, the widow of the founding leader of the governing Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), John Garang de Mabior, had also asked for release of eleven political detainees during a closed door meeting with him on Sunday.

Nyandeng and the detained politicians have allied themselves with Riek Machar, the former vice president, in opposing what they describe as Kiir’s increasing "dictatorial" rule.

They also complain that the internal functions of the ruling SPLM have not be allowed to proceed, including re-electing a new party Chairperson. Nyandeng and Machar have both expressed their desire to challenge Kiir for the position.

Since the fighting began Machar has been on the run and has assumed leadership of the soldiers in Unity and Jonglei state that have rebelled against Kiir and the alleged targetting of civilians along tribal lines in the capital Juba.

Although he denies instigating a coup, Machar now says he wants Kiir to be removed.

"You have heard conditions Riek Machar had given. One of these conditions is that I should step down. The other is that political detainees should be release before going for dialogue", Kiir told members of parliament.

Kiir said he was not surprised to hear the conditions because it was not the first his former deputy has called for the resignation of someone above him.

"I was not shaken because this was not the first time. He made similar conditions in 1991 when he attempted to depose John Garang. One of the first conditions was that Garang must go and the release for the political detainees", Kiir stressed.

"Democratic reforms and human right issues also came up but what happened when he formed his own movement? He became the worse" offender", he added.

Peter Adwok Nyaba, former minister of higher education, said his in comments published on multiple news outlets that Machar may be prone to errors of judgment but this does not mean he did not have a point in his opposition to the way the SPLM’s leadership was behaving.


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  • 25 December 2013 05:01, by Joseph Canada

    Kiir, you are responsible for atrocities you have caused. Those you detained didn’t inside any tribal wars. they didn’t order the Dinka army to go and disarm the Nuer army in the Tiger unit. So you know that clearly it will be you held accountable. unless you are still as dump as you are right now.

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    • 25 December 2013 06:26, by Chol A.

      @joseph nyagat only Nuer can held Kiir accountable but SS and world cannot. Your tribe Have murdered innocent Dinka in Malakal, unity state, Bor and within juba while neither of Dinka never took revenge against Nuer leaving in Aweil, lakes, Wau and Warrap where Kiir belong. Please don’t believe with what you heard and this is common issue to you Nuer because you act while you never start first!

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      • 25 December 2013 06:43, by Chol A.

        Con. Your tribe act like evil but believe me man of Dinka whose sons and brothers killed in these state will not allow them. Because you are confuse community which never want SS progress. If you people don’t listen than neither of losses to you will not be counted to anyone because Nuer are against government and SS public unless you avoid dr r splitter path and believe in South Sudan views.

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    • 25 December 2013 06:57, by zulu


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      • 25 December 2013 12:22, by Jalaby

        Mr. Zulu,
        What happened? before you were against Kiir and supporting Machar!! why you changed your position?
        I believe all Equatorians are now supporting Kiir because they don’t want to lose VP position that given to them!
        Tell dictator Museveni to pull out his troop from the south, this is not his business!!

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        • 25 December 2013 18:09, by swassy


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          • 26 December 2013 09:40, by australian

            Swassy: what "superpower"? The US? The EU? The UN? None will handle this situation properly. All have agendas. I, however, am disinterested and unbiased and care for all the Southern Sudanese. I offer my services!

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        • 12 January 03:19, by Hardlinner

          Jalabi, you r wrong. Equatorians support kiir becuase they do not want their state to be loot like bentiu, malakal and bor. Riek rebel are only for one thing that is looting.

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      • 26 December 2013 01:23, by ngadodo

        pple of Rss should know differences between two leaders which Salva and Reik Machar, Salva Kiir Un educated person if you see what he doing now he doesn’t knew Sequence, his bring foreigen solders to country eg Uganda,Kenyan USA and many more but didn’t know problem which his country going to faces later specially USA their going to take all resources of Rss. Riek Machar, his educated better thn S

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      • 26 December 2013 01:27, by ngadodo

        pple of Rss should know differences between two leaders which Salva and Reik Machar, Salva Kiir Un educated person if you see what he doing now he doesn’t knew Sequence, his bring foreigen solders to country eg Uganda,Kenyan USA and many more but didn’t know problem which his country going to faces later specially USA their going to take all resources of Rss. Riek Machar, his educated better thn S

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        • 12 January 03:28, by Hardlinner

          Ngadodo, riek is worst than uneducated person. Th guy put his personal interest above every thing else. Riek displayed primitive tendencies and shoukd never be allow to rule the country.

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    • 25 December 2013 12:37, by mathem jech amer

      You are now suppoting Kiir because you don’t want to loose Abyei. Riek publicly said that referendum in Abyei should be recognized, now Bashir refused to welcome him in Khartoum because of this, if you guys attempt to welcome him, that means no more oil to Arabs

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  • 25 December 2013 05:02, by sweettea

    Those innocent nuer civilians whom you murdered in juba in cold blood will hunt u down soon, it’s just matter of time.

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    • 25 December 2013 05:26, by Mayom County Boy

      let those who were been arrested to be release very soon
      because violence will not grow more .
      Am afeeling to the goverment of Republic of south sudan to understand rebel side for peace talk that may stop war to grow more bigest in the country .

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    • 25 December 2013 05:33, by Maguangdit

      You will taste the flavour of your crimes. Don’t just joke. Terrorists and criminals have no place in South Sudan. No "Nuer democracy" of killing in South Sudan. You only know genicide; you don’t know what democracy is.

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  • 25 December 2013 05:07, by Tutbol

    Look at this coward? He wants to repeat the same thing he did during the Panthou crises! cave in to the same so-called international community which wants to bring our country into civil war. Who really advices this coward? First of all no damn negotiation with Riek Machar in present of any of his Americans & Europeans criminals---no negotiation with him whatsoever. He needs to be hanged...

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    • 25 December 2013 05:21, by Tutbol

      ...with Nyandeng. Secondly, call the US to take away its UNIMISS mercenaries & let the UK take its Toby Lanzer, NGOs including Oxfam. Let the French move their MSF & Informed the US to rein in its USAID agents. They are the ones behind these messes, otherwise you must resign if you want to repeat your Panthou debacle. You can imposed youself to be S Sudanese leader if you want to be micro-managed.

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      • 25 December 2013 05:30, by Tutbol

        ...by foreign criminals. thirdly the foreign media propaganda have to be rein in. They have shown S Sudanese their true colours during this crises on what they are up to in our country---these foreign media are enemies of our country’s unity and they need to be shown their places.

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        • 25 December 2013 06:08, by Ping Yes

          @Tut Bol you awe rijht this round.foreign mediang followers should b carefully look at to avoid further bloodshed in thec ountry in the future

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        • 25 December 2013 11:28, by Mohammed Ali 2

          Americans don’t want to bring Machar, they want to bring Pagan and the Abeyei Gang in short they want Garang’s sons/orphans.Americans do not understand SS.In the current situation this can never happen.Unfortunately, the innocent pple of SS are dying due to the greed of local politicians and the hidden agenda of the foreign greedy powers!Am afraid if things go this way millions will die.

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          • 25 December 2013 11:35, by Mohammed Ali 2

            I don’t think they care about how many will die.They care about their agenda.The same like Rwanda, it happend under their eyes.This is happening under their eyes & supervision.Why they are so much concerned about the detainees, while it is safer to them than going out where the whole country is burning? My heart goes with poor, innocent who has no interest in what is going on.May god be with them

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            • 25 December 2013 11:42, by Mohammed Ali 2

              Malakal or Unity has stratgic value as the oil production has been shut down.Neither the government nor the rebels has enough money to finance this war.Machar was expecting the oil production to continue and reach a deal with Sudan.That is not certain by any means.Sudan will not get involved in this mess.Nobody will do.It is complicated!

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              • 25 December 2013 11:50, by Mohammed Ali 2

                The poor, innocent pple are going to starve to death ,en mass because neither govenment will have money to feed them and the poor security situation will not allow them to feed themselves.This is the real tragedy which pple are ignoring! Let the " faild state lobby" sort this crises as the death toll is now approachin hundereds not only tens of thousnds.

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    • 25 December 2013 05:23, by Peter Mading

      Please Mr. Salva kiir, Be advise not to release these guys. The moment you will release that is the end of your life not your rule or range. Please, take care of this nation. Garang said that "you had not change yourself since 1983 and there4 no any other person have a better qualification than you". Riek was presence when he said this remarks. Do not release them please.

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  • 25 December 2013 05:07, by Ankh

    You "leave them to just go" because they are innocent, have done nothing but try to turn the country they love into a democracy.
    Dear Salva
    We South Sudanese will never accept dictatorship. We are not Ugandans.

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  • 25 December 2013 05:12, by Bentiu son

    Killer Salva Kiir u had already dug ur own grave unnoticed idiot,you had massacred 4000 Nuer civilians cowardly as your allied Kuol Manyang did in 1991 when he had murdered 350 Nuer officers in Equatoria together with late Magar Achiek.It become a norms for you n Kuol to wantonly killed Nuer in cold blood. We will reach your ends soon than later cowards. Do not panic yet,we are coming for sure.

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    • 25 December 2013 05:22, by Bentiu son

      Salva Kiir what a lie to public that ur forces har recaptured Madina Bor from Dr Machar forces,don lie to public idoit, we are still in Bor Town n yesterday we had captured Madina Malakal from your stupid Army,while your puppet Kun(rat)Pouch took refuge in UNIMISS Camp. We are cleaning some rubbishes soon the Greater Upper Nile Region will be under Dr Machar control just wait cowards.

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  • 25 December 2013 05:15, by LL Reuben

    The meaning of democracy and its description sound really great on paper, so the West uses it quite conveniently to their advantage. Our “so educated” African fools are terribly prone to being deceived by this shady system called democracy. African idiots loose election and refuse to concede defeat only to accuse their winner opponent of meandering in undemocratic practices....

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    • 25 December 2013 05:18, by LL Reuben

      We hear so many clichés like; the election was a sham; the election was rigged, and the elections were fraud and so forth and so forth. This has always allowed the constantly lurking evil to creep into our affairs effortlessly. We are being confused quite easily. Our brothers who are power greedy are the quick ones to claim they know and they want democracy always...

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      • 25 December 2013 05:25, by LL Reuben

        I am pretty sure if I ask them to explain to me the meaning of democracy, they won’t be able to say it straight without stuttering and after all, will probably mention just the same used up cliche. I don’t understand how former thieves are well knowledgeable about good governance. But the West has it own agenda, something that is very hard to convince an utter fool with.

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        • 25 December 2013 05:33, by LL Reuben

          The kind of democracy the West is transporting to places like Africa and Asia is a form that allow them free licenses to oil wells and other mineral resources of the county. This form of democracy has nothing to do with achieving peaceful co-existance among rival tribes, ethnics, or different religious believers.

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  • 25 December 2013 05:29, by Ankh

    Its sad that some of my South Sudanese brothers (learned 1s too) will support dictatorship because of there hate for a man (Riek). To suggest that democracy can never work in Africa is just ignorant.

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    • 25 December 2013 05:39, by Maguangdit

      Dear Ankh,
      There is no democracy by coup or killing. Riak missed it all again this time. He had the good chance of challenging Kiir through ballots with the votes of South Sudanese but he thought overthrowing an elected government and massacring innocent people is what democracy is; may be Nuer democracy, not democracy by the people for the people.

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      • 25 December 2013 06:16, by Ankh

        There was no coup. Dont believe Salva’s lie.

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        • 25 December 2013 06:53, by LL Reuben

          Yes there was a Coup don’t believe in Riek’s lie...is that how you want it eh? Only Riek and Salva know if there was coup or no coup. However, a situation has to be studied if you’re willing to give reasonable analysis not just silly derogatory responses. How did Riek knew of his possible arrest that he decided to hid himself so well and most of the members of his group were reluctant...

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          • 25 December 2013 06:54, by LL Reuben

            and why is Riek assuming the commanding of Gatdet and James Koang Choul forces? Did he somehow just happen to ride along with an idea and situation that he has found himself in without any pre-planning or contemplation of some sort? Please explain yourself... The, you didn’t, he didn’t, I don’t and he is lying things are just pretty primitive.

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        • 25 December 2013 18:22, by The rock

          Man that was a coup with eye witness like ya , me and the whole nation plus the world, if ya saying that wasn’t a coup attempted then why is Riek group turned their back and how comes all the niuer leaders of the Army rebelled at once if that wasn’t a plan??? there will be no nation of only Niuer/ Dinka.

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    • 25 December 2013 05:44, by LL Reuben

      Riek is not a leader be that in democracy, communism, tyranny you name it. I have no personal hatred for the man. I think Riek is quite obviously inept to be a ruler of anyone or anything. Now name me any country in the world were democracy has succeeded, and do me a favor please; keep the delusion to yourself, will you?

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      • 25 December 2013 05:58, by Ankh

        Maguandit and LL Rubn
        I dont support coup/ rebellion or dictatorship. I support democracy and the idea that every South Sudanese has an equal voice. Im not delusional. What i know is that both Riek and Salva have blood on there hands and we need new leadership under democracy and rule of law. Please dont support what is wrong because of hate.

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        • 25 December 2013 06:30, by LL Reuben

          You don’t support Riek to be a president yet you’re condemning others of hating Riek...What a contradiction that is Mr.! Hmnn… maybe you should’ve read my initial postings thoroughly before you level me as Riek hater, there wasn’t absolutely anything in its composition that was against Riek. After all I made myself clear as usual that I don’t think Riek can be a leader of anyone or anything

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          • 25 December 2013 06:43, by Ankh

            LL Rubn
            I support Riek’s fight for democracy in South Sudan. I will support Riek 100 % on ballot box. I dont support rebellion but i know he was cornered to it.
            I cant condemn you for hating Riek lol hate him all you want but dont act like his cause is not for the betterment of our country.

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            • 25 December 2013 07:08, by LL Reuben

              Oh yes, I know you’ve been supporting his fight for "democracy" since the 1990s. Don’t waste your words telling me about it, I am quite clearly aware of it. It is a very special “fight for democracy” that I was talking earlier, the kind of democracy that only has to work in one his favor, if it doesn’t works in one’s own favor then you turn around begin to call for the master...

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              • 25 December 2013 07:09, by LL Reuben

                intervention, right? Why in the world would you think that somebody who has worked in the same administration for 8 years and has failed to deliver democracy just need more and more years to experiment with it?

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                • 25 December 2013 07:23, by Ankh

                  Ll Rubn
                  You seem to cosign Salva’s dictatorship. I think in your mind you truly believe Salva will make it out of this mess and continue ruling us. Please sit down somewhere and face a wall. It will not happen.

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      • 25 December 2013 06:03, by Tutbol

        The US of ole thieves is not even a democracy, but a country that is run by a selected few that don’t even adhere allegiances to the US citizens that elect them, but the multinational corporations & wall street vultures. But when they come to Africa, they lecture Africans their bullsh*ts & they often get some crack-heads like who take their tricks seriously...

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        • 25 December 2013 06:11, by Tutbol

          S Sudanese must show the UN troops a very good lessons. So that the UN would stop occupying other peoples’ countries on the pretext of their humanitarian bullsh*ts.

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    • 25 December 2013 06:22, by Tutbol

      Joseph Canada,
      If you believe in anything that come out of the UK; then you must have serious right perception issues. Don’t you that Britain, N Sudan & gulf arab states are our S Sudan’s arch enemies? Do your research on how these countries working day & night to see our country. But S Sudanese with influence have find them out.

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    • 26 December 2013 10:02, by australian

      I don’t even need to read it: I know Salva caused the fighting.

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  • 25 December 2013 06:41, by dude

    It is really shocking how the president can turn things around blaming Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon. Salva Kiir ordered his Dinka militia to go and disarm the Nuer and Dr.Riek Machar. They were met with resistance. after that the fight started. So why blame Dr.Riek. Is it because he has escaped you or what. Dr. Riek was running for his life. No blaming is needed against him. You your self Salva

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    • 25 December 2013 06:55, by Chol A.

      @dude if you think Kiir ordered militia to disarm Nuer, why are they resistant if Nuer knew nothing? You always call national army militia while you are the real militia in SS! It now turn nasty because Riek has run away and those who resistant during disarmament can still being disarm while innocent Nuer and Dinka have dead, what will you gain? The blame toward you not go away you are accountable

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  • 25 December 2013 06:43, by dude

    wanted to Kill Dr.Riek and he had to run for his life. Thanks God he survived your assassination attempt.

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  • 25 December 2013 06:50, by dude

    and because Dr.Riek escaped your Assasination attempt, you Salva Kiir Got upset and mad. You began to think of what to do next. You decided to killed innocent Nuer in Juba. You ordered your bodyguards from your state to killed the Nuer civilians. You did indeed killed them in a cold blood. and 4600 are now dead. So do not blame Dr.Machar because he has escaped and because he is still a threat.

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    • 25 December 2013 07:24, by LL Reuben

      Simple question: Why was it Dr. Riek the only one Kiir was interested of killing, when we are very certain that 10 of his colleagues have been jailed so far by Kiir not Killed.

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  • 25 December 2013 18:40, by The rock

    the worse thing now is that, that Nuer land is gonna be turned to a battle field and all nuer will be left crashed and homes burned but that’s what we south Sudanese don’t want to happen to our brothers. my question is to Dr. Riek, why is he doing this in innocent Nuer land??? the innocent people of Nuer will suffer the fights of 2 elephants while as grass. mark my words....

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