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Bor protesters fear arrest for opposing peace initiative

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May 11, 2017 (JUBA) - Leaders of the peaceful protests against the peace initiative headed by South Sudan First Vice President, Taban Deng Gai said they have been threatened with arrests by state authorities.

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South Sudan first vice president Taban Deng Gai arrives in Bor May 9, 2017 (ST)

The Gai-led peace committee was established by President Salva Kiir last week to quell on-going clashes between Jieng Bor and the Murle tribes in the east of South Sudan’s Jonglei State.

The clash was caused by the child abductions and cattle raiding that the Dinka have blamed their neighbours for over many years.

The meeting between the peace delegation, traditional chiefs and the state governor was interrupted on Tuesday and Wednesday by protestors chanting “we need our children back.’’

The country’s First Vice President, who is largely unpopular in Jonglei for being a top commander of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) rebels that overran Bor between December 2013 and January 2014, received cold reception on arrival.

“Who is Taban to people of Jonglei? Taban killed our old mothers in Jonglei church in 2013,” partly reads the protesters’ letter.

The protesters also demanded they be compensated for the cattle that were stolen by the Murle tribesman, as well as justice for those killed during the numerous raids.

“Now the three of us, as ring leaders of the demonstration are being hunted. We are told some security agents wanted to arrest us for leading a peaceful, legal protest,” a protestor said.

The meeting between Gai and Bor leaders was attended by the information and broadcasting minister, Michael Makuei Lueth, but they failed to reach consensus after the chiefs insisted that the government provides a detailed timeline to address child abduction and cattle raiding.

“This is not the first peace initiative and we can’t just ask our youths to return to Bor because Taban Deng Gai and his Minister came to promise peace. It is a nonstarter,” Alier Makuei, a local chief who attended the meeting held at South Sudan hotel said on Tuesday.

Many of the local chiefs, however, declined to attend the meeting held in Bor on Wednesday.

“I hear some members of the youth were protesting as we were discussing here, but we must end the conflict first so that people are given opportunities for development,” stressed Gai.

The South Sudanese First Vice-President further assured the citizens that the government would convince the rival Murle to cease hostilities against their neighbouring communities.

Authorities in Boma state, one of the country’s newly created states, have denied claims that the abduction of children by Murle tribesmen was a policy, blaming the practice on criminals.

Heavy armed Bor youths entered Boma in early April for an offensive that led to the capturing of several villages in Murle-land and the displacement of many civilians. Boma officials said dozens of children and women were been killed during the clashes.

(ST)

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  • 12 May 10:51, by Jur Tier

    Well done to those protesters though you will be intimidated by the security agents. Does Taban really have a case to present to you the citizen of Jonglei state. Why didn’t he follow those peaceful processes when he was relieved as the governor of Unity state then declared a rebellion against the same government he now claim fixing for.

    He deserves a bullet in the head!!!!!

    repondre message

  • 12 May 11:01, by Midit Mitot

    It,s your right to protest Bor community against that fake peace being brought by (STD) Stephen Taban Deng from Juba, Murle has been a notorious for so long since 1960s in greater Jonglei, but what I know is, Murle will retreating you up-to Aliab during rainy season if you will not take care, I knew your weakness.

    repondre message

  • 12 May 11:05, by Jur Tier

    con...

    I think the pure and naturalistic Bor youth has been patient enough and pushed to limits beyond return. When thousands of cattle are stolen and a hundred of children are abducted on daily basis, reports reached Juba with no single action taken. When it comes to a simple misunderstanding between two people in J1, our government act swiftly with a gesture of responsibility. Is that how the

    repondre message

  • 12 May 11:11, by Jur Tier

    the people’s government run the national affairs? Bor have an iron heart of which if they continuously ask their neighbours to simply live in peace but they turn while if not heard. Bor youth should bring back the cattle and the children, full stop!!!!!!!!!!

    repondre message

    • 13 May 01:24, by Don-Don Malith Rual

      It is too hard to healed a broken hearted as well as wounded ones! A child is a child, how do you expect to convenience those parents of the abducted if their children ’re not being returned by abductees? There is no permanent peace within South Sudan without forgiveness. Forgiveness must be there, and I personally thought that Mr 2nd Vice president could have go Bor with the stolen Kids,if

      repondre message

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