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AU welcomes launch of SPLM intra-party dialogue forum

April 6, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) – The African Union Commission has welcomed Saturday’s launch of South Sudan’s ruling party (SPLM) dialogue forum, saying the process should enable its leadership examine in-depth the underlying causes of the crisis facing the governing entity and the conflict that engulfed the new nation.

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Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC)

An advance team of the SPLM Politburo members convened in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa in preparation for the party’s leadership review and a self-assessment forum.

Initiated within the framework of the IGAD-led peace process for South Sudan, the forum reportedly provides critical contribution to the ongoing broader political dialogue towards national reconciliation and healing.

“The Chairperson of the Commission underlines the importance of this process, which should enable the SPLM leadership to examine in-depth the underlying causes of the crisis facing their party and of the conflict in South Sudan,” partly reads a statement extended to Sudan Tribune.

Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the AU Commission chairperson urged all stakeholders to take advantage of the intra-party talks, expected to run concurrently with the IGAD-led mediation efforts, to advance the cause of peace, security, stability, reconciliation and good governance in South Sudan.

She also commends the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) and the African National Congress (ANC) for having accepted to facilitate the forum.

The meeting was chaired by Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn of Ethiopia, who also doubles as the IGAD chairperson.

The AU commission boss, however, expressed concerns about South Sudan’s continued conflict and untold suffering inflicted on the civilian population in the nation.

She renewed the AU’s full support to the IGAD mediation, appealing to parties in the conflict to put the interest of their country and people above any other consideration.

(ST)