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Top UN official hails release of S. Sudan’s ex-military chief


November 16, 2017 (JUBA)- The head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), David Shearer on Thursday hailed as “statesmanship” the manner in which the standoff between President Salva Kiir and the former military chief of staff was resolved.

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David Shearer (UN photo)

Shearer, who met Kiir on Tuesday, said the dispute was resolved in a manner which put the interest of the country and its people above other considerations.

"I met President Kiir on Tuesday afternoon, one of our regular meetings; where we discussed the successful resolution of the Paul Malong situation", said Shearer.

"I’d like to take this opportunity to praise the role played by the Concerned Citizens’ Committee for Peace, which acted as a mediator between Malong and the government, he added.

Shearer said that the world body was, throughout the negotiations, in contact with a broad range of people involved in the situation.

"I have been in constant contact with the acting chairperson of the committee, Dr. Francis Deng, whose diplomatic abilities were instrumental in bringing about a peaceful conclusion to this issue. This peaceful conclusion came down simply to the choice of putting South Sudan and stability in Juba before all other concerns. We are grateful for the statesman-like way in which the situation was resolved", said Shearer.

Also discussed with President Kiir, Shearer further stated, was the importance of the presidential order on humanitarian access.

"This, we hope, will better serve the interests of the 6.2 million South Sudanese who need relief aid of one sort or another by ensuring that humanitarian agencies are actually able to get to them. We will, as usual, continue to monitor progress", further said the top UN official.

Shearer was one the officials in the country who expressed concerns and fears the standoff would escalate into a full blown conflict if it were not contained through negotiations. The row also interfered with the normal movement of the civilians and around along the roads passing the presidential palace from which the residence of ex-chief of staff is located at less than two minutes walking distance.

Many had earlier expressed fears that another bloody conflict was about to occur.

Last week, attempts by government forces to disarm Awan’s guards failed, prompting an uprising from some troops loyal to him. He also warned of bloodshed should government disarm and arrest his guards.

Awan, a former state governor, was sacked from the post of army chief in May 2017.


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  • 17 November 09:17, by Angelo Achuil

    Thanks a lot David, Church leaders, and those in gov’t who objected to more mass bloodshed in Juba - the evil ones are probably annoyed. It looked like someone was so smart this time on gov’t side to negotiate and compromise instead of the usual method "kill people, blow up things first then talk later"

    repondre message

  • 17 November 18:51, by Dinka-Defender-General

    Thank you, David Shearer, for your leadership, and the role you play in solving this issue. We, the South Sudan citizens appreciate your understanding and your leadership. Country first is our motto.

    repondre message

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