BREAKING: IGAD Foreign Ministers to meet Machar on Monday

Former First Vice President and SPLM-IO leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny (Photo credit: AFP)

Former First Vice President and SPLM-IO leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny (Photo credit: AFP)

May 11th 2018 (Nyamilepedia) – Foreign ministers of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) will travel to the South African city of Pretoria on Sunday for a meeting scheduled for Monday with the SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar Teny, senior SPLM-IO official told the Nyamilepedia on Saturday.

Manawa Peter Gatkuoth, one of the SPLM-IO delegates to the Addis Ababa peace consultations, revealed that the mediation has just informed them of the new development.

“IGAD foreign ministers from Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Sudan just informed us that they will be travelling to South Africa on Sunday to meet the Chairman [Riek Machar Teny] on Monday,” he told the Nyamilepedia on Saturday.

SPLM-IO leader, Riek Machar, has been under house arrest since October 2016 after the regional bloc reportedly asked South African authorities to detain him from leaving the country reportedly in hope to prevent him from taking part in the political crisis in South Sudan in order to stop the war but but in contrary, the war has been raging on since then.

In March, the IGAD decided to release him but the planned release has some demands attached to it which the opposition said do not make sense. The IGAD said Machar must first renounce violence in order to be relocated to one of the country outside the region (neighboring countries). For their part, the opposition said their group under Machar has already signed a Cessation of Hostilities Agreement with the government; something they said shows their group is not interested in violent meant of solving the current crisis.

However, the opposition official did not revealed what the IGAD foreign ministers will discuss with the opposition leader.

South Sudan descended into civil war in December 2013 after forces loyal to the country’s president, Salva Kiir Mayardiit and his then Governor of Northern Bahr Al-Ghazal State Gen. Paul Malong Awan went door-to-door in the capital Juba killing civilians belonging to the Nuer ethnic group sparking a nation-wide protests from top army generals from the Nuer leading to a civil war.

A peace agreement signed in August 2015 by President Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar and negotiated under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union (AU) in presence of Troika and other international observers collapsed in July 2016 following fighting at the presidential palace in Juba “J1” reportedly after President Kiir ordered a failed attempt to arrest the SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar.

Late last year, the IGAD decided to revive the peace agreement and had initiated a peace revival mechanism known as the High-Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) to bring back to life the 2015 peace agreement. Previous rounds of the HLRF has been unsuccessful and the IGAD said it expect the warring parties to negotiate on the last round of talks on 17th of May.

Representatives of the negotiating parties are currently in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia after the mediation invited them for consultations.

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