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Released SPLM leaders to participate in S. Sudan talks: mediators


February 5, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA/JUBA) - IGAD peace mediators invited the recently released seven leaders of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-In-Opposition) to participate in the peace talks after delaying it for three days.

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Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta (C) receives seven of the 11 political leaders accused of plotting a failed military coup in South Sudan in December, in Nairobi on 29 January 2014. Also pictured is retired Kenyan general Lazaro Sumbeiywo (second right) and director-general of Kenya’s National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) Michael Gichangi at far right (Photo: AP/Kenyan presidency)

On 29 January, Juba released seven SPLM figures accused with four others who remain in jail of plotting to overthrow the regime of president Salva Kiir, a charge they denied. Their release came after an agreement signed by the two warring parties in South Sudan on 23 January where they admit the role they "can play in the ongoing political dialogue".

Following a visit to Nairobi where they met with the Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta, the three Ethiopian, Kenyan and Sudanese IGAD Special Envoys met with the seven SPLM-in-Opposition leaders to discuss the next round of talks which will start on 10 February instead of the 7th of this month as it had been initially announced.

"The released detainees expressed their commitment to be part of the IGAD mediation process for political dialogue and national reconciliation in the Republic of South Sudan," said a statement the mediators released on Wednesday.

"In light of this, the mediation team has sent them an invitation letter to participate in the political process and they have confirmed", they added.

The IGAD envoys further disclosed their plans to visit Juba to meet president Salva Kiir Mayardit and other government officials. Also, they will meet with the former vice-president and rebel leader Riek Machar .

The meetings with the South Sudanese parties aim to discuss the framework of the second round of talks where the parties are supposed to discuss the root causes of the conflict, particularly issues of democratic reforms and transparency in the country.

Civil society groups and religious leaders said they want to be part of this process to discuss the organisation of the young state and the needed political and social reforms. It is not clear if they will be part of the political talks or will have a consultative role in a separate forum for stakeholders.


On 2 February, an advance team of the IGAD technical committee arrived in Juba to establish the Monitoring and Verification Mechanism for the implementation of the cessation of hostilities agreement signed on 23 January.

The 14-member team led by the Ethiopian Major General (rtd) Gebreegzabher Mebrahtu and his deputy the Sudanese Major General Mohammed Amin Moustafa Eltinay will assess the situation and determine the sites of monitoring before the deployment of the military observers in the conflict areas.

The advance team will report back to the IGAD mediators in Addis Ababa on 7 February with recommendations on the way forward.

South Sudan information minister Michael Makuei Lueth in a press conference held in Juba on Wednesday regretted the delay in the set up of the monitoring teams.

"We agreed to set up a monitoring and verification mechanism to monitor the conformity of the parties with the agreement to monitor whatever violations that may happen. Unfortunately, this body is not yet set up; up to now," he said.

Lueth further said there was no agreement on the "advance team", adding that Juba finds it strange to cooperate with teams whose composition was not part of the signed documents.


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  • 6 February 2014 08:27, by Monydit

    This IGAD are they problem in South Sudan and the Support of IGAD base on Dr Riekbaai Machar ,which will not work ,bez in 1991 they try to help Macahr but the Fail thesame this year their support to Riekbaai Machar will fail Again ,Am very Happy With Govt that they have no Pro Condition with the Rebel in this talk ,shamme on IGAD

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    • 6 February 2014 09:02, by Konkooc

      those are the greedy dogs who killed the innocent South Sudanese becuase of thier self interest. God will punish them double time to hell. they looted all citizen resources and sent thier sons and families to other countries while leaving poor suffering thier greedy.

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    • 6 February 2014 09:12, by Paul Chadrack

      it is not going to be as easy business as usual for kiir’s puppets in juba, everything about kiir will be expose and the real solution for all the problems created by this dictator which will lead an urgent solution with the pressure from the international community even if it lead to sanctions it is welcome by south sudanese people,getting rid of this regime is the only solution.

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    • 6 February 2014 11:37, by jubaone

      Kiir has no options but to fully comply with AU, IGAD resolutions for peaceful end of the crisis. Ultimately Riak will sign the final document with Kiir and that´s it. What then have we learnt? That people with low emotional intelligence often make irrational decisions that they then regret. This was not a coup, but an attempt to curtail democratic and political freedom.

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    • 6 February 2014 12:44, by Bentiu son

      Dinka Thugs lead by Makuei ngooth,listen idiots, No peace talk this time till illegal genocidal President Kiir Kuethpiny released the remaining 4 political detainees,withdraw all invaders UPDF,M23,JEM N SRF from RSS soil and finally step down either peaceful or forcefully for peace to return in our country.Failure to do so,than war will continue with nonstop till we capture him alive or dead in Ju

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      • 6 February 2014 13:53, by Jewish Ally

        bentiu son & all those who fuel war
        it is very unfortunate that your demand will never be made, if prisoners are not release or there is no cease fire the sufferers are they innocent people and what will we gain?I am requesting all citizen to embrace peaceful solution otherwise RSS will be doom completely

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    • 7 February 2014 03:33, by Tutbol

      Our govt has to be very mindful of Ethiopia, Ethiopia is tacitly supporting Riek Machar, but it explode in Ethiopia face very badly. Riek Machar has announced a couple of days ago of forming a *resistant movement* You can’t form an armed movement unless you have a base to operate in & continued supply of arms.
      Where will Riek Machar...

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      • 7 February 2014 03:36, by Tutbol

        get his base and arms if not Ethiopia? It is time S Sudan should consider any enemy of S Sudan.

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  • 6 February 2014 15:18, by Morthon Akol

    I personally not understand the participation of those people are they going to be a part of IGAD or a part of rebels?

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    • 7 February 2014 03:45, by Tutbol

      Morthon Akol,
      Good question, the released group of have not even tell S Sudanese or even the world that they are in the Riek Machar camp or If they even support armed rebellion, but their are some clowns in the IGAD member states & in the US & Europe who want to bully the S Sudan as usual. They want to legitimize Riek Machar rebellion by coercing those who don’t want to have anything to do with...

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      • 7 February 2014 03:53, by Tutbol

        Riek Machar armed rebellion. The group of seven should be allowed to state their side they belong. Rebeeca Nyandeng with her son have already shown S Sudanese where they belong---Riek Machar’s camp & his armed rebellion. IGAD doesn’t have to be acting a rebel to S Sudanese govt & its shouldn’t be inviting any anyone to negotiations. Remember, the rebels were the ones that suggested negotiation...

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        • 7 February 2014 04:00, by Tutbol

          to be done in Ethiopia & not the govt of S Sudan. There is nothing special about Ethiopia, the country has becomes a nuisance its self to all things that concerns our country. The govt of S Sudan can depend different venue & strip off Ethiopia from being a chair of the negotiation.

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          • 7 February 2014 07:20, by Wicdail

            Keep woofing unil when your anus got sour. You thought that, it got to be easy to misled the world and the people of RSS by creating a useless war to eradicate Nuer and their allies, but now you have to face the bitterness of it.

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