Home | News    Monday 17 March 2014

Lead rebel negotiator questions IGAD’s intention to deploy troops in S. Sudan


March 16, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) – South Sudanese rebels chief negotiator, Taban Deng Gai, has questioned the decision and intention of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) members states to deploy additional troops to the war-torn region.

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Head of the rebel delegation, Taban Deng Gai, attends the opening ceremony of South Sudan’s negotiation in Addis Ababa, January 4, 2014. (Photo Reuters/Tiksa Negeri)

He said the decision was "ill-advised" and unnecessary since the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has a force of over 12,000 fully mandated to protect the civilians in times of crisis such as the current violence between the government of president Salva Kiir and the rebels led by the former vice president, Riek Machar.

The IGAD member states resolved to deploy to South Sudan unknown numbers of forces from Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi to protect the oilfields and other vital installations which President Salva Kiir’s government may fail to protect.

The leader of the SPLM/A-in-Opposition, Riek Machar, also condemned the proposed deployment of the troops.

"This is an unfortunate decision by IGAD to interfere in the internal conflict. We reject it and condemn it in the strongest terms. It is an attempt to regionalise the internal conflict," he told Sudan Tribune on Friday by phone from one of his bases in Upper Nile state.

The former vice president, turned rebel leader, said the decision casts doubt on the neutrality of the IGAD member states in the conflict.

"If IGAD member states who mediate the peace talks want to interfere militarily in the conflict, we may rethink our participation in the talks," he warned.

Uganda, another IGAD member, deployed thousands of troops initially to protect what it called “vital installations”, but ended up joining government’s forces fighting the rebels.

The rebels’ chief negotiator further echoed his leader’s rejection of the troops deployments.

"This force would be operating parallel to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) peace keeping operation…The UN is an overarching and an inclusive body. Why should another force be created and deployed, if it has the same intentions as the UNMISS peace keeping force?" Deng said in a statement seen by Sudan Tribune.

He criticised IGAD for coming up with a decision which was neither part of the cessation of hostilities agreement nor consented by the opposition group.

Deng as a result questioned the neutrality and capacity of IGAD in handling the peace process.

"The SPLM Delegation in the peace negotiations that have been taking place since early January 2014 expresses deep concerns with the handling of peace and security matters by the regional block - the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD)", he said.

He further said that instead of coming up with new controversial decisions, IGAD should have made sure that the agreements signed by the two parties were implemented, including the withdrawal of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF), which he said failed to take place.

The rebels chief negotiator also criticised IGAD for its silence while President Kiir’s government is further violating the agreement on release of political detainees, saying instead of releasing the other four detainees, Kiir drags them to court while calling for return of the other 7 released political leaders to go back to Juba for trial.

Deng did not, however, indicate whether his delegation would boycott the expected resumption of the peace talks on 20 March, but said his rebel group will not continue to endure the violations and contradictions.

"IGAD should either be sincere in its mediation efforts or tell us in no uncertain terms that it is with the Government of General Salva Kiir Mayardit", he said.


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  • 17 March 2014 07:46, by Ajongtar

    Do’nt worry Mr. Taban Deng, we are already seeing signs of failed state in South Sudan.
    How comes that there are 2 missions in the country??????
    If Salva can’t solve his own internal problem then he is finished.
    Pagan will soon join you in Addis.

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    • 17 March 2014 07:59, by Malakal county Simon

      The Rebels should simply boycott the ongoing peace talk, IGAD failed to stay neutral in South Sudan internal crisis!!!!

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    • 17 March 2014 08:56, by mathem jech amer

      In Sudan, there are 3 missions, UNMIS, UNAMID & UNISFA, so don’t worry about 2 missions.

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    • 17 March 2014 10:27, by mathem jech amer

      All failed and greedy Nuers are the ones following Riek plus illiterate villagers called white army who know nothing but to die for no cause,elders should advise young Nuers to leave criminal Riek alone to die on his own not with future Nuers leaders of South Sudan.Better go to school than dying for nothing.

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    • 17 March 2014 12:40, by Rami Tot

      This is a vulnerable body begging the money from UN why for this body since it has the role of Unimiss?

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    • 17 March 2014 12:43, by Rami Tot

      Let remain in their countries they just want money in expense of south sudan hahah beggers

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    • 17 March 2014 15:51, by Son of Ngundeng

      We conderm the involment of the IGAD forces to be deploy in S.S as peace keeping forces. While there is an UNMISS.

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  • 17 March 2014 08:16, by Mapuor

    Hahahah Dinkas are victims of their own making.What was Taban Deng before joining the SPLA?He was nothing,worse still he is a bastard.Who promoted him to prominence?It was Garang who is a Dinka from greater Upper Nile.Hahaahaha are Dinkas of Upper Nile comfortable under Taban and Riek?Nooo they are looting,killing,maiming,and displacing them on daily basis.Paul Dor Lampur once predicted that

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    • 17 March 2014 08:23, by Mapuor

      in 1987 Garang obsessed with paper qualification decided to humiliate Lt.col Paul Dor Lampur by putting the whole of Western Upper Nile under the command of Major Riek Macar Teny,something that is utterly repugnant in military setting. Paul said that,he would not mutiny but Garang would cry soon.Hhahah Paul Dor must be a prophet.After three years,Garang cried saying’he stab us on the back’

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      • 17 March 2014 08:33, by Mapuor

        UNMISS is already taking side by7 supplying rebels with weapons.IGAD forces would be neutral body and would report on the real situation in the country.UNMISS under harlots would not deliver efficiently in South Sudan.

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      • 17 March 2014 08:41, by Bentiu son

        Dear Gen Taban Deng Gai,please withdraw from IGAD peace initiative since they became problematic rather than peace mediators.Dictator Museveni had influence n dragged those naive leaders because he doesn’t want to be blame alone .What stupidity? i appeal to Ethiopia Prime Minister Mr Haile marian to quit such conspiracy lobbying against people of South Sudan immediately for sake of good neighborho

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        • 17 March 2014 10:42, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

          Bentiu Son.
          You tell Taban to withdraw from peace talk, to WHERE?
          Please all the ways are open to be respond the government either millitarily or what so ever you need.

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  • 17 March 2014 09:18, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    The people of South Sudan should know that IGAD is in South Sudan for their own selfish economic interest - Dollars and jobs. The least we can expect from them. Our united stand to rid our government of evil is ours and ours alone. I believe we do not need more foreign military boots on our land other than the legitimate international UNMISS.

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  • 17 March 2014 09:32, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

    Taban Deng and his boss are lying, even though there is no IGAD, then they cann’t win this war.
    The ony trended is to defeat by SPLA the gallant.

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  • 17 March 2014 10:37, by Axiox

    Why should another force be created and deployed, if it has the same intentions as the UNMISS peace keeping force?" Deng said in a statement seen by Sudan Tribune. Perhaps it is because the U.N. has been caught supplying the rebels with arms and vehicles?

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    • 18 March 2014 04:39, by Mi diit

      And so since UNMISS will not go away, what will your parallel force do, fight the UN? Why is your failed government not capable of protecting your president, palace, residence, oilfields, etc? You better quit if you can’t protect yourselves instead of bringing foreign armies to protect you. You have become a disgrace to the South Sudanese people.

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  • 18 March 2014 03:33, by Mading Makuac

    We welcome the idea of Africa Union army to be brought in S.Sudan. whoever refuses will go hell! .

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