Mediator IGAD ‘considering deploying troops’ in South Sudan
By ANDUALEM SISAYFile: The Security Council within IGAD is considering deploying regional troops to monitor the ceasefire agreement in South Sudan. Picture: AFP Photo / Lionel Bonaventure
March 4, 2014 (Addis Ababa) — The Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), which has been mediating the peace talks to end war in South Sudan, is considering deploying regional forces as part of monitoring and verification of the agreement signed to end hostilities in January 23, 2014 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
This comes as the eight-member bloc postponed flagging talks in order to make them more “broad-based”.
“…Chairperson of IGAD Heads of State and Government Prime Minister Haile Mariam Dessalegn and the IGAD Special Envoys are consulting with leaders of the region, the African Union, the United Nations and IGAD Partners for the deployment of a protection and stabilisation force from the region,” the regional bloc said in a statement late Monday.
“The joint technical committee is setting up all the necessary arrangements for the expeditious deployment of monitoring and verification teams,” IGAD said in its press statement last night.
IGAD’s special envoys are also urging rival South Sudan parties to fully cooperate with the monitoring and verification mechanism and to abide by the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and show their political will and commitment to end the war.
“Furthermore, the envoys call up on the international community to put necessary pressure on the Parties to this effect.”
The statement further stated that IGAD is also planning to host a civil society conference on South Sudan in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia while ruling SPLM leaders are also set to hold separate meeting in the coming days.
In addition, to assess the achievements made so far and to further provide directions, IGAD is planning to host an extraordinary summit.
In order to ensure that a broad-based dialogue is developed, as per the IGAD mandate, the special envoys adjourned discussions on March 3, 2014 until March 20, 2014.
“This recess will allow the parties to further reflect and consult on guiding documents of the process, as well as allow the Envoys a critical opportunity to hear from civil society and ensure their views are reflected in the Declaration of Principles and framework for dialogue,” IGAD’s statement noted.
- Source: Africa Review