South Sudan According to Deputy Chairman of SPLA-IO SPLM-IO,
By Henry Odwar,
SPLM/A-IO Deputy Chairman and Deputy Commander-in-Chief.
Feb 11, 2017(Nyamilepedia) —— In the last three weeks, I visited 4 countries neighbouring South Sudan and engaged stakeholders (who were instrumental in peaceful resolutions of the conflict in South Sudan) at the sidelines of the AU summit in Addis Ababa. Specifically, my team and I met with UN, Troika, EU, AU and some officials from the IGAD countries. In our discussions, we pointed out the following:
The situation in South Sudan has worsened since July 2016, facts being:
1. UN report warns on looming genocide (precursors already being felt in the Equatoria region). Indicators: (an existing conflict, hate speech, polarized ethnic identities, dehumanizing atrocities, a culture of denial, displacement based on ethnicity, systematic planned violations of human rights, etc.). We are aware of the UN Secretary General letter to each Head of State in the region warning of this looming genocide. In the first weeks of his tenure as Secretary General, Guterres has been engaged in telephone diplomacy with regional leaders to discuss the way forward in South Sudan (reports).
2. The conflict has moved from the Upper Nile Region to;
– Equatoria Region,
– Western Bahr el Ghazal Region.
Thus the whole country is now engulfed in conflict.
3. Within six months from July 2016 disaster, more people have been displaced.
– Before ARCISS – 200,000 internally displaced, now more than 500,000 displaced in churches and UN POCs
– Before ARCISS – less than 100, 000 refugees were outside the country. Now more than 2,000,000 refugees in neighbouring countries.
4. Civilians in the countryside are in dire need of humanitarian assistance. In 2013, about 2m people faced famine. Today, reports points to more than six million people (half of South Sudan’s population) are in need of urgent aid.
– The “government’ does not allow humanitarian organizations, and hence aid, to reach the people in need, particularly in IO (Opposition) areas (Olaf Skoog, then President of UNSC, 27 Jan 2017).
– Dangerous Country to be in – for elderly, women, children, journalists, aid workers, etc.
5. From 10 States to 28 States to 32 States. What next?
6. The economy of South Sudan near total collapse (1000% inflammation!).
7. Farce in ARCISS implementation.
The outcome of our engagement has been positive. Former President of Mali, Alfa Konare, is now the key person to guide the parties to the conflict so as to reach a peaceful settlement. This came about with the agreement of IGAD which shall no longer be in charge of the peace process. The engagements also allows for Dr. Riek Machar, our Chairman, to move freely in order to engage in the peace process. One of his priorities shall be to convene a PB meeting in Pagak to discuss the way forward for resolving the conflict.
While yearning for peace, we shall not betray the vast majority of South Sudanese and shall never succumb to cosmetic maneuvers.
camouflaged as serious peace initiatives.
Deputy Chairman of Sudan people Liberation Army in opposition and Sudan people Liberation Movement in opposition Dr Henry Odwar.