News / Africa

South Sudan Blames Rebels ‘Intransigence’ For Stalled Peace Talks

South Sudan's Foreign Minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin speaks during a press conference with Interior minister Aleu Ayienyi Aleu (L), in Juba, South Sudan, April 18, 2014. The Government of South Sudan strongly condemns the attack on innocent civilians in
South Sudan's Foreign Minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin speaks during a press conference with Interior minister Aleu Ayienyi Aleu (L), in Juba, South Sudan, April 18, 2014. The Government of South Sudan strongly condemns the attack on innocent civilians in
Peter Clottey

South Sudan’s foreign minister says the stalled peace negotiations between the government in Juba and opponents of the administration are due to the intransigence of representatives of the rebel leader and former vice president Riek Machar at the talks in neighboring Ethiopia.

Barnaba Marial Benjamin called on the international community to pressure the rebels to end the fighting, insisting that President Salve Kiir is committed to ending the conflict and restoring peace and stability in the world’s new west nation.

"South Sudan is committed to peace. The leadership, the party and everybody else, we are for peace and we have never left the peace forum,” said Marial. “So the problem is with the rebels and as you can see for the first time the mediators and the international community have now realized those who are violating the cessation of hostilities are the rebels themselves. Our troops still have orders to respect the ceasefire.”

He says the government’s negotiating team remains in Ethiopia waiting on the rebel delegation in order to begin the next round of talks after the negotiations stalled.

“We have never left the peace table,” said Marial. “The talks were stalled and delayed because of the intransigent position of the rebel group. That they didn’t want to attend the peace talks or continue talking on the issues of peace because they didn’t like the stakeholders and former detainees to be a part of the negotiating team although that was their first request of Dr. Riek Machar, [but] now he doesn’t want them anymore.” 

The government has accused the rebels of breaching a ceasefire agreement signed between President Kiir and Machar after the rebels attacked Ayod town on Tuesday.

A delegation of the rebels failed to meet Ugandan officials as part of the peace negotiations after both groups attributed the failure to miscommunication. The rebels have insisted Uganda withdraw troops from South Sudan as their main demand to ending the conflict at the peace negotiations in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia mediated by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

Marial says it is unlikely that Uganda would pull its troops out. He says the Uganda People's Defense Force (UPDF) is there to combat violence carried out by armed groups that cross borders to terrorize citizens in countries including, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Sudan and Uganda.

“The rebels desire to visit and talk to Uganda is really not to talk about the issue of Ugandan forces in South Sudan, because this is a sovereignty issue that connects the two countries,” said Marial. “The Uganda forces are there because there are other important issues that they are taking care of. The issue for example of the Lord’s Resistance Army, which is causing havoc in our region including South Sudan, DRC, and Uganda.”

The rebels have accused Uganda of taking sides in South Sudan’s conflict by supporting the government in Juba.

But Marial says the presence of the UPDF forces in South Sudan forms part of bilateral relations between Juba and the administration in Kampala.

“The issue why they are going to Uganda maybe is to get more advice, how they should listen to the voice of peace and I think that is the most important thing,” said Marial.  

Clottey interview with Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, Foreign minister
Clottey interview with Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, Foreign ministeri
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

 

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

US Urges Restraint in Hong Kong Protests

Protesters angered by Beijing's decision to only approve candidates that it sanctions for Hong Kong's leadership elections in 2017 More

Archive of Forgotten UCLA Speeches Offers Snapshot of History

Recordings of prominent voices in social change, politics, science and literature from 1960s, early 1970s now available on YouTube More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Dengtaath from: Akobo,South Sudan
July 24, 2014 3:29 AM
You keep on bombarding rebels position, what could you think that rebels can do rather than parsueing your Army
Cease your bombardment there will be no more attack
One thing is the UPDF ,This UPDF is not south sudan people's defense forces imagine better to name SPLA to be UPDF

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenyai
X
Gabe Joselow
September 29, 2014 6:20 PM
Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Video

Video Reconstruction? What Reconstruction? Life After War in Gaza

It’s been a month since Israel and the Palestinians agreed to a ceasefire to end 52 days of an air and tank war that left 60,000 homes in Gaza damaged or destroyed and 110,000 homeless. Sharon Behn reports that lack of reconstruction is leading to despair.
Video

Video US, Saudi Arabia and UAE Hit Islamic State's Oil Revenue

The United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have bombed oil facilities operated by Islamic State militants in Syria. It was a truly collaborative effort, with the two Arab countries dropping the majority of the bombs. The 12 refineries targeted were estimated to generate as much as $2 million per day for the terrorist group. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb has the story.
Video

Video Russia's Food Sanctions Raise Price Worries, Hopes for Domestic Production

Russia retaliated against Western sanctions imposed for its actions in Ukraine by halting food imports from the West. The temporary import ban on food from Australia, the European Union, Norway and North America has Russian consumers concerned that they could face a sharp increase in food prices. But in an ironic twist, the restrictions aimed at the Kremlin have made Russia's domestic food producers hopeful this can boost their business. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Washington to Pyongyang: 'Shut This Evil System Down'

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is calling on North Korea to shut down prison camps and other human rights abuses following a United Nations Commission of Inquiry into "widespread and systematic human rights violations." VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid