IGAD Chief Calls On South Sudan’s Factions To Commit To Peace Talks

Kenyan President Kenyatta held talks with South Sudan President Kiir. Kenyatta visited Juba on Wednesday this week to help restore hope in the peace talks that have reportedly stalled. [Courtesy photo]

Accompanied by his two ministers of Defense and Foreign Affairs, the Kenyan President had over an one hour of close-door talks with his counterpart, President Salva Kiir. He described the meeting with Kiir as “fruitful.”

Current peace talks between South Sudan government and rebels brokered by the IGAD in an effort to end violence in the fledgling nation are currently stalled over what observers describe as “unmet” conditions of the rebels.

Over two months now, following escalation of violence in Juba to several parts of the country – a claim South Sudan government said was a coup attempt by ex-Vice President Dr. Riek Machar; thousands of people have been killed with others displaced. Uhuru said the impact of the crisis is a concern to the region.

Earlier on US Secretary of State John Kerry had warned the rival parties not to use the talks for “gimmick.” The IGAD brokered peace talks in Addis Ababa stalled for over two weeks now have failed to yield solution to end the crisis.

“We came in this morning to visit and show my brother [President Salva Kiir] issues that are current to show us support, solidarity from him and people of South Sudan and also to share our concern about the issues that are ongoing,” Uhuru told journalists shortly after his meeting with Kiir at the State House, J-One.

He said his move is aimed at “the need for us [IGAD] to be able to find speedy resolution to these issues in order to enable the people of South Sudan to get on with the most critical issues on economic and social development.”

“We urge all leaders to ensure that what needs to be done is done for the sake of peace and stability,” Uhuru said. He called on both sides to respect the cessation of hostilities agreement.

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