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South Sudan president blames rebels for war in the country


July 9, 2015 (JUBA) – President Salva Kiir of South Sudan said hopes after achieving independence of the country were dashed when his former deputy, Riek Machar, allegedly attempted a “coup d’état” and launched “rebellion” in December 2013.

President Salva Kiir, (L), accompanied by army chief of staff Paul Malong Awan, (R), waves during an independence day ceremony in the capital Juba, on July 9, 2015 (Photo AP)

President Kiir in his speech marking the 4th anniversary of the country’s independence on Thursday said unlike the previous wars which the people of the region fought against Khartoum’s successive regimes, this war was a creation from within.

“This time, we created our own valley through misunderstanding, poor performance, corruption, tribalism, hatred and aggressiveness,” he told a crowd of people who attended the commemoration at late John Garang’s ground in Juba.

“The mistakes of few among us affected each and every one of us and the impact was felt in every corner of South Sudan,” he said.

He decried the destruction caused by the 19-month long civil war, saying greater Upper Nile region, home to the rebel leader Machar, severely faced the consequences.

“The little infrastructure we had in Bor, Malakal and Bentiu were destroyed,” he reminded.

He however said his government was working hard to bring peace back to the country and urged the citizens to support him through an inclusive negotiated process but not an imposed peace agreement.

Kiir also called on the internally displaced persons (IDPs) who shelter in different protection sites manned by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) to come out of their refuge and live like the rest. He also said he understood their hesitation to come out.

The South Sudanese president who had his tenure extended by parliament for three more years commended the decision, saying this would give him ample time to make reforms and carry out development in the country.

“Due to the current crisis in the country, our parliament made a righteous decision some months ago to extend the tenure of the current government for three years,” he emphasized.

He commended the former detainees for returning to the country under his leadership, saying “I call upon the rest in the rebellion to join us in order to save the lives of innocent civilians and their properties.”

The colourful celebration was however only attended by president Yoweri Museveni of Uganda as the only head of state that showed up despite invitations to many other heads of state and government to join in the commemoration of the historic day.

Foreign ministers from Sudan, Egypt, Ethiopia and Kenya represented their countries at this event.


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  • 10 July 2015 01:11, by lino

    Only one head of state attended??? It means legitimacy in question!!!

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  • 10 July 2015 01:30, by Mr Point

    Who started the war?

    Was it Machar who murdered hundreds of Nuer civilians in Juba?

    Was it Machar who accused the "detainees" of starting a coup - and then releasing them when there was no evidence of a coup?

    Was it Machar who organised the December 2013 surprise attack by tanks on the residence of the former vice president?

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    • 11 July 2015 04:48, by Hardlinner

      Mr point, it doesn’t matter who stated the war. both leaders are to be blame for this senseless war. they are too greedy for power and lack vision. kiir militias killed hundreds of nuer civilians and riek rebelled and lied to nuer white armies that tenth of thousands of nuer have been killed in juba. they both had intention in this stupid war.

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  • 10 July 2015 03:31, by Developer

    Salva Kiir has visions to loot the country revenues but lack credibility to develop the country.

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    • 10 July 2015 06:25, by Lotodo Awino Odug

      Government can not please all the citizens, and because of that,rebellions are going to there. what need to be done is to find ways to minimize these wide spread rebel groups. train special commando units to go after them, kill and bring the heads of their leaders back to the capital. our people are too smart, so leaders must be smart too.

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      • 10 July 2015 07:01, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

        Mr Lotodo

        Those who live in glassed houses do not throw stones to other people’s glass houses. May be your head may go first before the heads of others who are patriotic devoid of nepotism, tribalism, corruption and have great affinity to build the nation that belongs to multitudes of nationalities.

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        • 10 July 2015 07:17, by Lotodo Awino Odug

          What I said above is truth, even if your messiah Riek become our president, still some of the Nuer who will be left out will revolt and wreck havoc on innocent civilians. there will be no such a thing as one people,one nation if troubled individuals with guns are not caught and put down for good.

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  • 10 July 2015 10:02, by Rami Tot

    rebels didn,t kill Dinka in Jubain mid December 2013 but only dinka president kill innocents Nuer only that raises many questions of why innocents should dies then result was total uprising revenges, here who started the war the drunkard president is talking unknowingly he has totally mess up, he has not still comes to his senses yet knowing the cause of the war, he is himself.

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    • 11 July 2015 05:56, by Hardlinner

      rami tot remember this series of killing civilians was first started by riek in 1991. so people with same perspective like riek can say hold on a minute, isn’t it same riek that was responsible for 1991 mass murder of civilians in bor. so innocent nuer killed in juba become victim of riek evilness.

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  • 10 July 2015 12:57, by Eastern

    Kiir has reduced the whoel of South Sudan as a county as the 112th district of Uganda (excluding Kampala)! Museveni has to continue attending independence anniversary in South Sudan since he is the defacto head of the newly acquired district!

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