News / Africa

South Sudan Ex-VP Backs Agreement to End Violence

FILE - South Sudan's former vice president Riek Machar
FILE - South Sudan's former vice president Riek Machar
Peter Clottey
Former South Sudan vice president Riek Machar says groups demanding the immediate cessation of hostilities are “jumping the gun,” insisting representatives of the two warring factions holding peace talks in Ethiopia need to agree on the mechanisms to end the conflict.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has called for the prosecution of perpetrators of human rights violations in South Sudan, and some observers are calling for the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators.

Machar also says he backs the prosecution of those who commit gross human rights abuses and crimes against humanity in South Sudan’s ongoing conflict.  He blames President Salva Kiir for the ongoing conflict.

“Salva Kiir should go to the ICC,” said Machar.  “He has targeted one ethnic group.  He has embarked on ethnic cleansing resulting in the Juba massacre.”                   

The violence in South Sudan erupted after President Salva Kiir, a Dinka, accused former vice president Riek Machar, a Nuer, of attempting a coup.  Macher, who is in hiding, denied the accusation.

“There was no coup d’état,” said Machar.  “I am committed to a democratic process.  It is Salva Kiir who did not want the democratic process in the party, nor does he want to go for the elections in 2015...  There was no plan at all for a coup.”

  • Displaced people who fled the recent fighting between government and rebel forces in Bor by boat across the White Nile, prepare to sleep in the open in the town of Awerial, South Sudan, Jan. 1, 2014.
  • A young displaced boy rests on the wheel arch of a water truck while others fill containers from it, at a United Nations compound on the outskirts of Juba, the South Sudanese capital.
  • Yared, 2, is held by mother Madhn who fled from the town of Bor a few days ago, as she receives medicine for her child at a Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) medical tent at a United Nations compound.
  • Displaced people gather under a mosquito net tent as they flee from fighting between the South Sudanese army and rebels in Bor town, 180 km (112 miles) northwest from capital Juba December 30, 2013.
  • A soldier from South Sudan's army stands guard in Malakal in the Upper Nile State of South Sudan, Dec. 31, 2013.
  • A young displaced girl carries a bucket of water back to her makeshift shelter at a United Nations compound which has become home to thousands of people displaced by the recent fighting, in the Jebel area on the outskirts of Juba.
  • The U.N.'s top humanitarian official in South Sudan, Toby Lanzer, assesses the situation at the U.N. compound where many displaced have sought shelter in Bentiu, Unity state, South Sudan, Dec. 24, 2013. (UNMISS)
  • A pirogue packed with passengers arrives at a dock after crossing a waterway near the town of Malakal, seen from an airplane over South Sudan, Dec. 30, 2013.
  • U.N.'s top humanitarian official in the country Toby Lanzer, left, makes a visit to assess the humanitarian situation at the U.N. compound where many displaced have sought shelter in Bentiu, in oil-rich Unity state, in South Sudan, Dec. 24, 2013.

Member states of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the African Union and other international human rights groups have demanded a cessation of hostilities in South Sudan’s conflict.

But, Machar says measures including monitoring systems would have to be agreed upon by the two parties in order to ensure both sides adhere to the ceasefire calls.

“The two teams are in Addis [Ababa], they have not yet agreed on an agenda,” said Machar.  “Normally, cessation of hostilities is agreed upon and a monitoring system for verification is also agreed upon.  So those who are demanding it are jumping the gun.  The negotiating teams need to agree on it.”

There are news reports that forces loyal to Machar are marching towards South Sudan’s capital, Juba.  But, Machar says troops from the national army have also been heading towards areas under his control.

“There are troops that are allied to Salva Kiir that are marching northwards in an attempt to capture Bor.  So, we definitely would match them and we would march southwards,” he said.

The African Union has called on both sides to create the space to enable humanitarian agencies to provided assistance to the victims of the violence.  Machar says he agrees with the call.

“The areas which are under our control are open for humanitarian access so that people are served.  We have said that publicly, that we would give access to all the humanitarian workers so that they can provide services to the people,” said Machar.

Clottey interview with Riek Machar, South Sudan's former Vice President
Clottey interview with Riek Machar, South Sudan's former Vice Presidenti
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

UN Fears Rights Violations in China-backed Projects

UNHCHR investigates link between financing development and ignoring safeguards for human rights More

Boko Haram Violence Tests Nigerians’ Faith in Buhari

New president has promised to stem insurgency; he’s scheduled to meet with President Obama at White House July 20 More

Social Media Network Wants Privacy in User’s Hands

Encryption's popularity in messaging is exploding; now it's the foundation of a new social network More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Elkasheef Hassan from: canada
January 07, 2014 12:25 PM
It is important to remember your old conflict with you brother to the north .Fighting has never help any one. Just stop. All dying in the war can develop the farms and roads the hospital the school this industry .do you think leaders are there to kill or to lead the nation to prosporety?

by: Anonymous
January 06, 2014 7:14 AM
God be with s.sudan to make paece agreement.
In Response

by: Waraba martin from: Kampala
January 07, 2014 3:15 PM
Macher; whatever u do will be done to u and ur whole generation.

In Response

by: ANONYMOUS from: USA
January 06, 2014 8:16 PM
Dr.Machar and Kiir people are dying, please go for ceasefire and mechanism should be UN forces between your forces till you two leaders agree on what you want to be done. I'm so shame of my country for now. The present of Uganda force in the front-line helping SPLA is un acceptable. It seem M7 is promote ethnic cleansing. There are 63 ethnic groups in S south Sudan and 62+M7 are fighting one ethnic, no that is a big embarrassment to Uganda. However, the main aim should be peace Dr. Machar otherwise you are losing your population to vote for you indirectly if your thinking of election.

by: Kuer Keer from: Australia
January 05, 2014 10:58 PM
O n my behalf those people who are they problen course should be hold accountable and they have face justice.
In Response

by: philip from: Juba
January 07, 2014 4:36 AM
I believe that this is more than a senseless war between tribes which immensely contributed to the freedom of the people of S. Sudan. it pains me so bitter to see same people whom we struggled for their dignity, peace and prosperity are dying innocently because of power struggle and personal interests. I believe even if the conflict is centered on Nuer Vs Dinka as it seems yet no side will ever finish up the other. However people will at the end come to settle the issue on the table. So why wasting our human resources in vain?
As for the above comments, the issue is not what happened after the first bullet but the issue is why the first bullet by one tribe related army personnel in Juba in the first place. Justice must be provided if the international community is genuine in S. Sudan's future sustainable peace. Because peace prevails where there is justice and so does the war and insecurity where there is no justice. Therefore, i support the IGAD brokered peace and most importantly the idea of ICC intervention to investigate and find out the perpetrators.
Mr. Machar and Mr. Kiir should rewind the history of the people of South Sudan. The political power is one and half year away to be given not through bloodletting but through the vote of very people whom you are killing- they are the one who owns that power. The few who will survive will definitely look for the leader whose hands are bloodless, the power will be given to somebody who cares for the welfare of the governed and not for himself.

by: Dave from: Canada
January 05, 2014 1:41 PM
Politicians in S. Sudan make all us to feel a shame to belong to country. we know more about killing one another than it is to develop our country. Someone may be a PhD holder but stull thinks and acts like uneducated person. Child mortality among the Nuer and Dinka peopleis at 46%, copared to only 13% in Equatoria region. Human life in these areas is work nothing. Someone.can even kill youin the class in front of a teacher and other pupils, in the market etc without shame or fear of the law.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
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 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 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.

VOA Blogs