August 5, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – IGAD mediators have called on the SPLM in Opposition to rejoin inclusive peace talks which resumed on Monday as the rebels demanded to confine the talks to the warring parties.
The rebels delegation on Tuesday walked out from the talks when stakeholders from the opposition parties, SPLM former detainees and civil society groups, were seated to involve in the direct negotiations.
Speaking at the fifth session of peace talks, the rebel acting chief negotiator, Dhieu Mathok Diing, called for restriction of the negotiations to the two warring parties, stressing that other stakeholders would participate in a consultative manner particularly when it comes to the negotiations on formation of a transitional government of national unity.
In a statement released on Tuesday evening, the mediators said the SPLM in Opposition failed to attend the talks despite their previous commitment to the “inclusive, multi-stakeholder roundtable peace process and the modalities for comprehensive talks”.
“The mediation renews its call to the SPLM/A (In Opposition) to honour its commitment to resolve the crisis. The mediation expects the SPLM/A (In Opposition) to immediately return to and fully participate in the multi-stakeholder negotiations, which will continue on 6 August 2014,” said the statement.
In an interview with Sudan Tribune last July, the former vice-president and rebel leader Riek Machar said the warring parties only have the right to fix the rules of the talks and its agendas not the mediation.
“The driving force should not be the IGAD. IGAD should be the moderator. They bring us together since we are willing to come together under the auspices of IGAD, the parties should drive the process,” he explained.
Last week, the mediators expressed hopes to reach an agreement allowing to end the conflict and to form a transitional government to implement political and constitutional reforms in the new nation.