SPLM-IO urges gov’t to release detainees Dong Luak, Aggrey Iddri and Peter Biar Ajak

SPLM-IO Chairman and Commander-in-Chief Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon (File photo)

December 27th 2018 (Nyamilepedia) – The main armed opposition group,  the SPLM-IO led by the country’s First Vice-President designate, Dr.  Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon, urged on Thursday the government to release prominent detainees, Dong Samuel Luak, Aggrey Iddri and Peter Biar Ajak in the interest of peace.

South Sudan’s President,  Salva Kiir and opposition leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny in June signed a permanent ceasefire agreement to stop fighting as parties were closed to sign a final deal.

The permanent ceasefire agreement signed in the Sudanese capital Khartoum also provided for the the release of all prisoners of war and political detainees.

The SPLM-IO in September released four POWs under their custody but the government only released five among whom is the SPLM-IO governor of Kapoeta state.

Ex-Machar spokesman James Gatdet Dak who has been sentenced to death on charges of treason and inciting the people against the government was released on October 2nd 2018 after exactly two years in jail.

In a statement issued on Thursday,  the SPLM-IO Chairperson of National Committee for Information and Public Relations  Mabior Garang de’Mabior, urged the government to release detainees such as Peter Biar Ajak, Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Iddri in the spirit of peace implementation.

“Today, the SPLM/A (IO) takes this opportunity to urge the Government of South Sudan to respect and demonstrate their commitment to the R-ARCSS, and release all Prisoners of War and the remaining Political Prisoners, Detainees and abductees notably; Cde Aggrey Idri, Cde Dong Samuel Luak and Dr. Peter Biar Ajak,” the statement issued on Thursday partly read.

The statement further condemned the attack last week against peace monitors near the capital Juba as well as the sexual assault against women near Bentiu in last month.

“….we condemn the attack on the Juba Monitoring and Verification Team (MVT) by the Government of South Sudan security forces in the Luri Area, as reported by CTSAMVM on December 19th, 2018,” it said.

“The SPLM/SPLA (IO) also condemns the, rape and assault of approximately 125 girls and women near Bentiu, Lich State, as reported by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) organization Holland on 29th November, 2018,” the statement added.

‘Slow’ peace implementation 

The group further said in the state that peace deal is going slowly blaming lack of funds for the delays of the process.

“The SPLM/A (IO) would like to, however, inform our members that, the implementation of the R-ARCSS is going on slowly, owing to, among other things, lack of funding,” it said.

The statement further appealed to “the International Community and all friends of the people of South Sudan to support the R-ARCSS. We encourage our friends not to abandon the people of South Sudan at this critical juncture of the peace process.”