US says Kiir, Machar lack ability to lead peace process, criticizes extension

Kiir, Machar posting for a photo following their meeting in J1 (File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

November 8th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – The United States of America said on Thursday that President Salva Kiir Mayardit are lacking the ability to lead the war-torn country’s ongoing peace process criticizing the two men’s decision to extend the pre-transitional period for over three months.

On Thursday, Kiir and Machar decided during a talk brokered by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Sudan’s leader of Sovereignty Council Abdel Fattah al-Burhan to postpone the government formation to January 2020.

The two men had signed a revitalized version of a 2015 peace agreement last year and were required by that agreement to form what would be the Reconstituted Transitional Government of National Unity (R-TGoNU) in May.

However, due to what the region said was lack of political will to implement the needed pre-transitional tasks by May, the parties extended, during a meeting in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, the action to November 12th.

Kiir had said he will not miss the latest deadline but the United States threatened that it would not recognize a government formed without the outstanding issues such as the formation of one national army in place. Machar had threatened to opt out of that government.

The Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Tibor Nagy, questioned whether Kiir and rival Machar are the right people to lead the peace process given their failure to form a unity government next week.

“[The United States is] deeply disappointed [that] President Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar are delaying [the] formation of a unity government in South Sudan,” the top US diplomat wrote on Twitter.

“This is inability to meet their own deadline [and] calls into question their suitability to continue to lead the nation’s peace process,” he further wrote.

The US diplomat said the Trump administration was “considering all possible options to put pressure on those individuals who would impede peace and promote conflict.”

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