News / Africa

    Kenyan President Says he Will Not Allow Genocide in South Sudan

    Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta reacts as he attends Mashujaa (Heroes) Day at the Nyayo National Stadium in capital Nairobi, Oct. 20, 2013. Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta reacts as he attends Mashujaa (Heroes) Day at the Nyayo National Stadium in capital Nairobi, Oct. 20, 2013.
    x
    Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta reacts as he attends Mashujaa (Heroes) Day at the Nyayo National Stadium in capital Nairobi, Oct. 20, 2013.
    Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta reacts as he attends Mashujaa (Heroes) Day at the Nyayo National Stadium in capital Nairobi, Oct. 20, 2013.
    Reuters
    Kenya's president said he would not let the conflict in neighboring South Sudan descend into genocide, though he stopped short of spelling out any action to end the increasingly ethnic slaughter.
     
    Four months of fighting between government and rebels in the world's newest nation has raised fears of a wider conflict that could further destabilize a fragile region and send hundreds of thousands more refugees over borders.
     
    Uganda, another neighbor of oil-producing South Sudan, has already sent in troops to back the government. Regional bloc IGAD, which is brokering troubled peace talks, has said it will hold a meeting in coming days to “consider options”.
     
    “We refuse to be witnesses to such atrocities and to remain helpless and hopeless in their wake,” Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a statement late on Friday.
     
    “We especially reject the possibility that we are creeping into genocide again in our region. We shall not stand by and allow it to happen.”
     
    Fighting began in December between troops loyal to South Sudan President Salva Kiir and his sacked deputy, Riek Machar. Clashes spread quickly beyond the capital, often pitting Kiir's Dinka people against Machar's Nuer.
     
    The United Nations said rebels slaughtered hundreds of civilians when they seized the South Sudan oil hub of Bentiu earlier this month, hunting down men, women and children who had sought refuge in a hospital, a mosque and a Catholic church. The rebels dismissed the accusations.
     
    Days later, Dinka residents of Bor town in Jonglei state attacked a U.N. base where about 5,000 people, mostly Nuer, were sheltering, the United Nations said.
     
    Kenyatta's use of the word “genocide” has resonance in a region that has vowed never to see a repeat of the ethnic slaughter of hundreds of thousands of Rwandans twenty years ago.
     
    The stalled talks are due to resume in Ethiopia on Monday to try and thrash out a deal on political reform after a long power struggle between Kiir and Machar triggered the unrest.
     
    South Sudan's government, under growing pressure from regional and Western powers to end the conflict, on Friday released four senior political figures it had accused of helping start the violence in a bid to seize power.
     
    Machar's negotiation team on Saturday welcomed the release of the four detainees - a former top ruling party official, national security minister, deputy finance minister and ambassador to Washington - after treason charges were dropped.
     
    But rebel spokesman Hussein Mar Nyot said another of their key demands - the exit of Ugandan troops and other militia supporting the government - had not been met.
     
    “If these forces from outside are withdrawn, this will give a very strong ground for peace to come,” Nyot told Reuters.
     
    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will travel next week to Ethiopia, another South Sudanese neighbor which is leading the mediation, to discuss peace efforts in the region.
     
    South Sudan declared independence from Sudan in 2011 under the terms of a peace deal that ended decades of civil war fuelled by ethnicity, religion, ideology and oil rights.

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    In a jab at Trump, Clinton says her team wants to 'build bridges, not walls'; Obama Hails Kaine's record; Trump calls Kaine a 'job-killer'

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Lawrence Chiang from: Nairobi
    April 28, 2014 3:03 PM
    it is so ridiculous and unfortunate for Africa and the world to talk about this deadly conflict like they are reluctant. They should do something beginning from Museveni and the two principals of alleged S.Sudan. Museveni must pay fir this because he is the one who prolonged this ugly situation in the country. should African leaders do something I think no. let the international community handle this peacefully.

    by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
    April 27, 2014 3:40 AM
    Africa has no options or capacity to stop any ongoing atrocities and genocide within their borders. The good thing is President Kenyatta have got the nerve to say openly that he will never allow genocide in S. Sudan. But the bad thing is that the world could see that Kenyatta is simply exercising political lip service!

    by: Jeffrey
    April 27, 2014 1:02 AM
    Maybe the BBC could send its intrepid reporter Roy to cover this situation in South Sudan, having completed his myopic Zimbabwe assignment. ?

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora