News / Africa

African Union Demands Dialogue to End South Sudan Violence

SPLA soldiers drive in a truck in Juba December 21, 2013. African mediators sought on Saturday to meet rivals to South Sudan's president in a bid to end fighting that threatens to drag the world's newest country into an ethnic civil war. REUTERS/Stringer
SPLA soldiers drive in a truck in Juba December 21, 2013. African mediators sought on Saturday to meet rivals to South Sudan's president in a bid to end fighting that threatens to drag the world's newest country into an ethnic civil war. REUTERS/Stringer
Peter Clottey
The African Union (AU) is demanding  an immediate cessation of hostilities in South Sudan and has called on leaders of the warring factions to engage in dialogue to prevent an all-out civil war, according to AU spokesman, El Ghassim Wane.

Wane says the AU supports efforts by the regional Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to help resolve the security situation in South Sudan.

Hundreds of people have been killed and tens of thousands displaced from their homes since the beginning of the conflict. Wane says senior officials of the AU’s Peace and Security Council deliberated on the security situation in South Sudan.

“We are indeed extremely concerned about the current situation in South Sudan, which has the potential to totally undermine the viability of the new nation,” said Wane. “The AU is extending full support to the efforts initiated by IGAD, to call for a restraint for cessation of hostilities and for dialogue. We will continue our efforts with close consultation with IGAD and with [other] international partners.”

The violence erupted after President Salva Kiir, a Dinka, accused former vice president Riek Machar, a Nuer, of attempting a coup.  Mr. Marcher who is in hiding has denied the accusation.  News reports say ethnic tension between the two groups is fueling the conflict, with members of the Nuer and Dinka ethnic groups targeting each other. 

Wane says the recent meeting between the IGAD, the African Union, as well as the United Nations representatives and the warring factions in South Sudan was productive.

“The talks were useful, said Wane. “[They] conveyed the concerns of the international community, conveyed the message of constraint, and the message of dialogue to all the stakeholders. There is no other option than dialogue to end this political dialogue and prevent it from evolving into all out civil war, which will have far reaching consequences for the people of South Sudan for the region and for the continent on the whole.”

He says President Kiir’s announcement that he is willing to hold “unconditional” talks with Mr. Marcher is a positive step towards finding a solution to the security challenge the country faces.

“We need to pursue those efforts and make sure that the efforts made do translate completely into some tangible progress, as a way of addressing the fate of the civilians who are caught in this very difficult situation,” said Wane.

He says the AU has called on the warring factions to create an environment to enable aid agencies to provide assistance to victims of the violence.

“We have made repeated appeals for all stakeholders to create space for humanitarian assistance. So that humanitarian actors can assist the civilian population,” said Wane. “
Clottey interview with El Ghassim Wane, an AU spokesman
Clottey interview with El Ghassim Wane, an AU spokesmani
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs