News / Africa

E. African States to Deploy Troops in South Sudan

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir attends a session during the 25th Extraordinary Summit of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) on South Sudan in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, March 13, 2014.
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir attends a session during the 25th Extraordinary Summit of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) on South Sudan in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, March 13, 2014.
Marthe van der Wolf
East African states say they will start deploying troops in South Sudan by mid-April.  East African heads of states met in Addis Ababa to discuss the size and mandate of a stabilization and protection force in the three-month old conflict.

Lead mediator Seyoum Mesfin says that troops from East African countries should be deployed by mid-April, but he did not specify numbers.

“We should not wait until all the countries prepare and tell you that they send," he said. "The usual U.N. mission, they prepare the camps first and it takes them 6-9 months. We don’t want to see this. We want to see the effective implementation of this mechanism at the earliest possible time.”

Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Burundi will send troops, and possibly also Djibouti.  Each country is being asked to also prepare a standby force in their respective capitals, in case the troops in South Sudan need reinforcements.

Soldiers loyal to South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir have been fighting rebels believed to support former vice president Riek Machar since mid-December, following a political rift.

A cease-fire was agreed to in January but has been repeatedly violated by both sides. Part of the truce deal called for monitoring and verification teams to be sent to South Sudan.

Seyoum says leaders at Thursday’s summit agreed that the stabilization force will, in part, protect the cease-fire monitors.

“The mandate is protection and deterrence. They will protect the mechanism for the verifying and monitoring mechanism for the cessation of hostilities," said Seyoum. "They will also deter from any attack of critical areas that are of paramount importance to the country.”

A request to deploy the protection and stabilization force by mid-April has been sent to the African Union and the United Nations Security Council. The deployment, if approved, will be paid for by the international community.

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Comment Sorting
by: Paul Bany from: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
March 15, 2014 12:53 PM
It is very bad move taken by IGAD countries leaders to send troops to South Sudan to fight with one tribe Nuer in the name of protecting the serial killer president Kiir who has massacred the Nuer tribe with impunity. If Prime Minister Meles Zabanawei is still alive today, should have not accept this demonic move of crushing one tribe on earth . Anyway God of Abraham ,Isaac and Jacob will help the Nuer tribe who is main target of Dinka led government and it's mercenaries ally forces! Through God POWER, Nuer will win this war

by: Paul Bany from: Windsor Ontario , Canada
March 15, 2014 12:42 PM
This is unacceptable move for the IGAD countries leaders to deployed their troops in the name of protecting oil installation. Their main agenda here is South Sudan oil in expense of Nuer tribe life. They want to wipe out the Nuer tribe from the map of South Sudan so that they will be free to enjoy the oil! What a shame to a blind Ethiopian Prime Minister who has been blindfold

by: Weirial Gatyiel from: Juba, South Sudan
March 14, 2014 12:21 PM
It is a Desastrous to the people of South Sudan.
Why did the IGAD include president m7 who has a deadly hand in South Sudan conflict?

by: Weirial Gatyiel Puok from: Juba, South Sudan
March 14, 2014 11:25 AM
It is a destructive move ever take by IGAD!!
I strongly condemned the foreign invasion of south Sudan in the name of protecting the regime of Salva Kiir who massacred thousands of South Sudanese innocents civilians.

Big Nooooo for the intervention of IGAD FORCES!!!!!!

by: Tut chuol Guor from: Ethiopia
March 14, 2014 4:47 AM
African forces should go for civilian protection not to reinforce salva kiir with Museveni forces who suffered fighting
why IGAD is always following MUSEVENI footsteps

by: David Manyang Tut from: Australia
March 13, 2014 4:03 PM
What the use of stabilising force and in case the south sudan army need reinforcement? This is tactics of uganda who got huge deal with salva kirr without south sudan parliament. Why museveni use clusters bombs on civilians cattle camp? I think the wording of reinforcement southsudan army, its just another ploy to bring east African to massacre nuers. And east African shouldn't be deployed to built dictator who kill tens of thousands with a war he started himself. Salva kirr start this war to assassinate riek in juba. After riek ascaped he turned to kill nuers civilians terribly for four days. Salva must just resign and pave ways for interim government.

by: Losike Albert Koteen from: New York
March 13, 2014 12:38 PM
These troops should be neutral, impartial and ready to stabilize the country based on their mandate.

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