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Right body condemns S. Sudan embassy for blocking peace event

June 3, 2018 (KAMPALA) - The Centre for Peace and Justice (CPJ) has strongly condemned the South Sudanese embassy in Uganda for obstructing a public debriefing on South Sudan’s peace talks that was held at Cavendish University in the Ugandan capital, Kampala.

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The High Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) at the African Union Hall, Addis Ababa (Getty)

The weekend public dialogue was being organized by civil society groups in the context of the ongoing high-level revitalization forum.

CPJ’s executive director, Anthony Tito said the embassy officials should have instead supported the peace process, instead of frustrating efforts aimed at bringing an end to the peoples’ suffering.

“As a civil society organization, we don’t need a permission from South Sudan embassy to carry out an event or to conduct a workshop or any sort of activity that we need to carry out, therefore we will not seek permission from the embassy to carry our activity,” said Tito.

“I wonder since when embassies are allowed to restrict civil society activities in the diaspora, besides that 98% of South Sudanese living in Uganda are refugees and are under the care of office of Prime Minister and United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees,” he added.

South Sudanese, Tito stressed, deserve to know what is taking place during the peace process mediated by the regional bloc (IGAD).

“The refugees are human, they need to be updated on the progress of the talks, but I wonder what the South Sudanese government who is part of negotiation team does not want refugees and others to know the development of talks,” said Tito.

The human rights official, however, said the diaspora civil society would continue with the engagement of South Sudanese in Uganda on the importance of peaceful co-existence and brotherhood.

The second round of the IGAD-led High Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) ended last week without any deal after the warring parties rejected a proposed power sharing deal developed by IGAD is yet to announce the next date for the negotiations.

South Sudan plunged into war in December 2013, barely two years after independence from Sudan, after a disagreement between President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar deteriorated into a military confrontation.

Tens of thousands have been killed by the fighting between troops loyal to Kiir and forces loyal to Machar. The conflict has also left a quarter of the country’s population of 12 million either internally displaced or as refugees in neighbouring countries.

(ST)