Mediation team: Addis peace talks progressing well
By Nation Reporter
Photo(AFP) South Sudan Machar delegation led by chief Taban Deng (centre) and other members of his delegation talk withUS Envoy to Sudan and South Sudan MrDonald E Booth (right) on January 4, 2014 during talks in Addis Ababa to try and broker a ceasefire between Salva Kiir led government forces and rebels allied to deposed vice-president, Riek Machar that has claimed thousands of lives in the world’s newest democracy. AFP
January 9, 2014(Nairobi) — The IGAD Special Envoys who were tasked with finding a solution to the ongoing political crisis in South Sudan have said that there is indeed a major progress on the issue of cessation of hostilities as both the government and the detainees have committed to unconditional negotiations on the same.
In a Press Statement released after the consultations held in Juba with President Salva Kiir Mayardit and detainees on Tuesday and Wednesday, the envoys said Kiir has reiterated his government’s position that the current crisis is political and he reaffirmed his full support to the search for a political solution.
“The Mediation team, while in Juba, met Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of the Republic of South Sudan who reiterated his government’s position that the current crisis is political and he reaffirmed his full support to the search for a political solution. The President also expressed the government’s commitment to unconditional negotiations on cessation of hostilities to bring an end to the violence in his country,” read part of the statement.
The envoys also met the detainees and held discussions on the crisis. The detainees concurred that the crisis is indeed a political one which requires political solution.
“In light of the ongoing peace talks in Addis Ababa, the detainees expressed their support to the talks on unconditional cessation of hostilities and further stated that their status as detainees should not be an impediment to reaching an agreement on cessation of hostilities,” read the statement.
The envoys also noted that direct negotiations between the parties are continuing in Addis Ababa in good spirit.
The IGAD mediation team to South Sudan is chaired by Ambassador Seyoum Mesfin and IGAD Special envoys Gen Lazaro Sumbeiywo and Gen Mohammed Ahmed Moustafa El Dabi alongside the IGAD Executive Secretary Ambassador Eng Mahboub Maalim.