Home | News    Saturday 4 January 2014

South Sudan rivals set for direct peace talks in Addis Ababa

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By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

January 3, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) – Delegations from South Sudan government and its rebels are set to begin direct talks on Saturday as East African regional leaders struggle to end nearly a month of intense fighting in the world’s youngest nation.

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Mabior Garang de Mabior (L), the son of late South Sudanese leader John Garang and member of the rebel negotiating team, arrives in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, with other delegates on 2 January 2014 (Photo: AP/Elais Asmare)

On Friday, mediators from Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) held separate talks with representatives from the two warring parties, currently gathered for ceasefire talks in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

Ethiopia’s ministry of foreign affairs confirmed that the negotiations, mediated by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), began on Friday.

"Both delegations are meeting the mediators separately," Dina Mufti, Ethiopia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson, told Sudan Tribune.

"We hope to bring both sides into face-to-face talks soon" he added.

Mufti said that IGAD is committed to supporting the peace process to bring an end to the weeks of violence in South Sudan that has killed over 1,000 people and displaced tens of thousands.

Friday’s discussions were aimed at narrowing existing differences between the two sides to pave way for direct negotiations, which were scheduled to have begun on Wednesday.

Preconditions set by the leader of the rebels, Riek Machar, are believed to be slowing the process. The former vice-president has demanded that all political prisoners be released and that a mechanism to monitor and implement the ceasefire be put in place.

South Sudan’s security forces arrested 11 senior members of the country’s ruling party (SPLM) accused by president Salva Kiir of allegedly conspiring to overthrow him on 15 December. All the accused strongly deny this and claim that Kiir took the opportunity of infighting within the army to silence his critics.

So far South Sudan has agreed to release eight of the 11 detainees. Taban Deng Gai, whom Kiir sacked from the position of Unity state governor last year, is leading the rebel negotiating team after he managed to escape from Juba without being arrested.

Mufti said that direct talks were likely to begin either on Saturday or Sunday. .

Authorities have blocked access to all journalists from the Addis Ababa Sheraton Hotel, the venue for the talks.

Ethiopian officials, who are playing lead role in brokering a truce, are optimistic that a ceasefire agreement will be reached in the coming days, but others are skeptical as the two sides continue tying to gain military advantage on ground.

(ST)

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  • 4 January 07:01, by omoni jr.

    Blind and incompetent president put the nation on fired without knowing the consequences. His husband from kampala misled and misadvised the illitrate Dinka chief of Gogrial.
    Death to him idiot president.

    repondre message

    • 4 January 19:23, by Johndumo14

      What peace talks ?
      Massage to all South Sudanese,we should had got our independance long time ago not because of this idiot riek machar who steped us the SPLA at the back,he was with our enemy,even now khartoum is helping him with guns and food.
      Do you reward criminals for having killed people? Machar “committed a crime and should be held accountable,” he said.
      His army looted banks and shops.

      repondre message

    • 4 January 19:41, by Johndumo14

      Riek Machar is using some stupid drunkard idiots like Grang Mabior to win support ,they have forgotten that Riek Machar was the one who killed thousands of Dinkas in Bor ,and is the same guy who come to Bor to loot and kill,by the way why he sends people like Grang Mabior?Grang Mabior thinks that he can be presidet of south sudan ,because his father was founding father,no way!!!

      repondre message

    • 4 January 19:50, by Johndumo14

      Mabior Garang de Mabior is a disgraceful to this peace talks,
      are there no other people to represents Riek Machar in this Peace talks ? There is no point here ,if it is true these guys are not happy ,but the presidet is a dinka ,grang mabior is and many other in the government are dinkas,the mediators
      must ask this guy grang mabior and his mother Nyandeng, what do they realy want personally ?

      repondre message

  • 4 January 07:19, by John N

    Brave General Taban Deng Gai is taking the lead of discussion from the rebel force and Dr Machar is doing what we want to be in a place as our force are advance to Juba city today.i believe mr president will not escapt to Uganda as well as Koul and Mathok will face live bullet soon.................

    repondre message

  • 4 January 07:28, by Bolong

    Omoni jr. You need to see my Doctor if you don’t have one. Please! hurry up, and let me know when you get cure.

    repondre message

    • 4 January 07:40, by omoni jr.

      Bolong.
      I know the truth hurt and pain you really bad.
      So, i do not need any damn Dr. boy.
      But thanks or No thanks for offer.

      repondre message

  • 4 January 07:41, by Uncle J

    Mabior Garang...yee ngo je menh Aguej mom Agenen ke yah? who will tell him bezab maaan ke wic moj? and that is fat boy mr. Riek. What a big shame to be a follower of a devil man who was once time a great rival to your father. Come on Mabior don’t get fool you have to be reasonable like your younger brother Chol

    repondre message

  • 4 January 08:06, by Don-Don Malith Rual

    IGAD should adopted NATO Objectives and treaty to upholds their individual rights as well as their alliances, these alliances should be providing Maxium security including arms control, disbarment, and non- proliferation. Form join military to be spear heading any elements of self interest or groups of destructives majors to deal with them to achieve esstential national security threat in Afric

    repondre message

  • 4 January 08:16, by Don-Don Malith Rual

    In Africa without infringing upon to minimum level sufficient to preserve peace & stability while reducing the strategic role of groups or individual self interest that result to the lost of innocent civilian civilian. As the talks progress we need a positive out come but let’s not be playing the games of some cards where one place some cards on the table and leave the dangerous one beneath it!!!

    repondre message

  • 4 January 08:29, by tootke’bai-ngo

    Where are Salva Mathok & Telar Deng? Bona Malual misled them to confused Kiir on how to manage the country. The Gogriel thieves thought creating a tribal war will be as easy as stealing oil moneys.
    Please! release those neutral politicians put in jail for nothing, they will help bring peace to the country quiker than that delusional puppet Micheal Makuei lueth who is only looking to keep his job.

    repondre message

  • 4 January 08:36, by tootke’bai-ngo

    uncle J,
    Please! stop using foul language, Politic is politic. Kiir has lost the way, and that’s why we are in this mess. Mama Nyandeng & her son are trying to do what they can to save our nation. you and those Panhom lualbil being calling her names which is not totally appropriat. South Sudanese should appreciate their efforts.

    repondre message

    • 4 January 08:55, by allan

      riak is very fool send garang son for peace talk shame on u riak mabior is gang memeber i know him since kenya
      good luck

      repondre message

    • 4 January 09:14, by Uncle J

      To be honest, I will only respect Nyandeng when she is in her grave just for the sake of death spirit. She never deserve anything to be respected for because all I know she was a freedom fighter’s 1st lady and that doesn’t make her a great politician. Nyandeng have got nothing to do with the government.

      repondre message

  • 4 January 09:03, by Marco Bul

    Those who are blaming Mabior Garang and Nyandeng are also blaming Hoth Mai,Gony Biliu.
    As for me,Riek and Kiir must both be banned and barred from politics.They are bunches of tribalists.

    repondre message

  • 4 January 10:26, by Marco Bul

    Hahaha.
    They are delegating niggaz and boozers.
    Taban Deng is in military uniforms.
    Yoannes Musa(Jalaby) has gone to the loo to wash his ass and will be joining them soon.
    The other niggaz have snubs in their jackets.
    Hahaha.Pack of goons.

    repondre message

    • 4 January 11:34, by Uncle J

      Taban Deng Gai is only bitter for his governorship depose that’s y he had to lead the rebel team. Government is doing it
      wrong by accepting negotiation with insects. Riek loyal should die like dogs until they surrender same way they did in 1991. Dinka Bor is the weakest Dinka that’s y Riek always based his rebellion faction in Bor

      repondre message

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