South Sudan

BREAKING: South Sudan Rebels Boycott Peace Talks

Kiir_575653881 sans-serif; font-size: 9pt; line-height: 150%;”>IGAD said in a statement to Chimpreports today, sildenafil “The SPLM/A (In Opposition) failed to attend the multi-stakeholder roundtable negotiations.”

The regional body, which has been trying to find a political, home-grown and final solution to the instability sparked by a botched coup attempt in Juba in December 2013, said boycotting the rebels’ decision to boycott the talks “is in contradiction to the 9 May 2014 Agreement as well as the 10 June 2014 Communiqué which provides for the inclusion and participation of other stakeholders in the negotiations for a new political dispensation in South Sudan including arrangements for a transitional government of national unity.”

IGAD was hoping that the rebels and President Salva Kiir’s government would have set up an inclusive and transitional government to manage the country’s affairs until 2015 when national elections are expected to be held.

Kiir says he will not relinquish his position as President in the proposed government as he was elected by his people.

The development comes at a time of heightened tensions in the youngest nation in the world, with government sources saying rebels have already commenced preparations to attack the strategic town of Nasir.

The multi-stakeholder roundtable talks, launched on 20 June 2014 in Addis Ababa, sought – for the first time – to bring SPLM Leaders (Former Detainees), political parties, civil society and faith-based organizations, to the negotiation table, alongside the Government of South Sudan and SPLM/A (In Opposition).

This is in accordance with the 9 May 2014 Agreement on Resolving the Crisis in South Sudan and the 10 June 2014 Communiqué of the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government.

IGAD today announced that its “Special Envoys shall, during the adjournment, continue to undertake broad consultations with South Sudanese stakeholders, the leaders of the IGAD region, the African Union, the United Nations Security Council and other friends and partners of South Sudan.”

It remains unclear why the rebels chose to make a u-turn in participating in the dialogue.

They had earlier demanded a revision of the criteria for the participation of stakeholders in peace talks. However, last week, the rebels said they had decided to forward with the talks as IGAD looks into their grievances.

IGAD’s latest statement will shock mediators who have been pushing for a peaceful solution to South Sudan’s political wrangles that have left thousands dead and many more condemned to refugee camps.

IGAD further pointed out the Envoys will also follow up the full operationalisation of the Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (MVM) in accordance with UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2155.

“IGAD and its international partners are moving rapidly to implement UNSC Resolution 2155 with the Regional Protection Force being deployed with a new mandate to protect civilians, reinforce the MVM and ensure unhindered humanitarian access as well as the protection of humanitarian corridors,” the statement reads in part.

Ethiopia, Kenya and Rwanda are expected to deploy troops in South Sudan under IGAD mandate to maintain a buffer zone between rebels and government forces.

During the same period, IGAD stakeholders are expected to consult and provide feedback on the draft framework for political negotiations toward a settlement of the crisis in South Sudan by 1 July 2014.

“The stakeholders are urged to prepare for the next phase of negotiations and engage substantively in order to meet the deadline endorsed by the IGAD Heads of State and Government, to complete dialogue on the formation of a transitional government of national unity within sixty days.

The IGAD-led mediation urges the political leaders of South Sudan to assume their responsibilities with the same resolve that their neighbours and the international community attach to this tragic situation.”

The body did not reveal when talks would resume.


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