News / Africa

South Sudan Hopeful of Improved Peace Talks With Rebels

Negotiators at South Sudan peace talks in Addis Ababa review a draft cessation of hostilities agreement on Jan. 13, 2014.
Negotiators at South Sudan peace talks in Addis Ababa review a draft cessation of hostilities agreement on Jan. 13, 2014.
Peter Clottey
South Sudan’s government expects a “significant improvement” in peace negotiations with the rebels, following the release of political detainees accused of plotting to overthrow President Salva Kiir’s government, according to presidential spokesperson Ateny Wek Ateny.

The next round of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) sponsored peace talks in neighboring Ethiopia are planned to begin Monday in the capital, Addis Ababa.  The released detainees include Pagan Amum, former Secretary General of the governing Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), Majak D'Agot, Oyai Deng Ajak and Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth. 

The release of the detainees has been one of the major demands by representatives of the rebels allied to former vice president Riek Machar at the peace negotiations.                                                            

“A significant result is to be expected in the resumption of the peace talks on Monday simply because before the former suspects of the coup attempt were released, are not going to be one of the pre-conditions the rebels would want to put forward before the negotiations,” said Ateny.  “I believe there would be a change in the manner in which the rebels would want to negotiate peace with [the] government.”

Ateny says the government would not oppose the alleged coup plotters from being involved in the peace negotiations to help resolve the conflict.

“The president is on record to have said that they are actually free to join any of the either side, either to cast their lot with the rebels or to come to the government side,” said Ateny.  “The government is of the opinion of [not] allowing a third party to be part of the peace negotiations, simply because, we wanted the peace negotiations to be confined to the two warring parties so that they can stop the bleeding.”

Friends of the released detainees have expressed concern the government has prevented the four from leaving the country.

But Ateny says supporters of the administration were unhappy about the release of the political detainees, since, they wanted to be punished for the conflict that has left tens of thousands dead and hundreds of thousands displaced from their homes.  He said President Kiir had to calm them down with the explanation that the release is a goodwill initiative aimed at helping to resolve the conflict.

Ateny also denied media reports the administration has confiscated their documents, thus preventing them from traveling to neighboring Ethiopia to be part of the peace negotiations.

“The president has urged them to be inside the country simply because, our political problem can be solved within South Sudan,” said Ateny.  “So that they could build the trust with the public because the public [was] outraged by their release.  So they have to be here in South Sudan at least for some time ... before they are allowed to travel.”

Ateny says the administration is hopeful the release of the political detainees will serve as a goodwill boost measure to help find a solution to the country’s crisis.
Clottey interview with Ateny Wek Ateny, presidential spokesperson
Clottey interview with Ateny Wek Ateny, presidential spokespersoni
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said To Be Improving

Experimental drugs have been tried on six people: three Westerners and now, three African pyhysicians More

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities residents rebuild their lives, but many say everyone is being treated with suspicion More

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

Girls learn to object; FGM practitioners face penalties from jail sentences to stiff fines More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: kujien from: unmiss
May 11, 2014 7:06 AM
we are inthe need of.


by: Philemon M from: Malawi
April 28, 2014 5:21 AM
Hello my fellow africans,lets build our nations please by strengthening and growing our economies instead of conflicts merely created by greed and jealousy.Its high time now we enrich our african continent.LETS WAKE UP PLEASE

In Response

by: Nahor from: Uganda
April 28, 2014 8:28 AM
If Generals could disinterests themselves for managing the politics of any country, this world would be a fair place to live in. Yes you have forced to Sudan accept you gain freedom through war. Please allow the civilians to propel the country to prosperity. Form a new government without the gunmen, South Sudan will see peace in totality


by: David from: USA
April 27, 2014 10:36 PM
It's really funny for Mr. president and his crew to say what they think is intelligence idea. Why would you delay the releasing till thousand and thousand of people have been killed. This should take place long time ago but if politicians don't lost money they won't release innocent people. I don't know what kind of stupid sense does it make but when a man cannot tell, he or she is stupidly blind.


by: Sam Dave from: USA
April 27, 2014 7:24 PM
Ateny Wek Ateny, why you and your Persident learned through the mistake all the time? Paul Malong Awan to be chief of staff and Marial Nuor to be SPLM/A intelligence! What's the government? By what circumstances that you realize that the four political detainees can help the both warring parts in Addis Ababa for peace process? AU, IGAD, USA, UK, and Norway asked Juba's administration to release all political detainees since you imprisoned them. What's the failure president of South Sudan that you advised. Right now all political detainees are innocent. Oh I forgot. Mr. Kiir released them because the rebels gave persident pressure and to stop to go to your home state. Please stop stupidity of racism or Barh El Gazalisationists instead of play the roll of United South Sudan and treated all civilians equal.


by: Malueth Agany from: Bravo letters
April 27, 2014 2:18 PM
Indeed we South Sudanese actually praying for peace, what are we fighting for? We shouldn't humiliate the Freedom which was fought for two decades whereby many lives were lost.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improvingi
X
Carol Pearson
August 19, 2014 11:43 PM
The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.
Video

Video For Obama, Racial Violence is Personal Issue

The racial violence in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson is presenting U.S. President Barack Obama with an issue to which he has a deep personal connection. To many Americans, Obama's election as America's first black president marked a turning point in race relations in the United States, and Obama has made ending the violence a policy priority. On Monday he issued a new call for calm and understanding. Luis Ramirez reports from the White House.
Video

Video Clinton-Obama Relationship Could Impact 2016 Election

President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have a long and complicated relationship. That relationship took another turn recently when Clinton criticized the president’s foreign policy. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports there is renewed attention on the Clinton-Obama relationship as Hillary Clinton considers running for
Video

Video Iran Looks to Maintain Influence in Baghdad With New Shia PM

Washington and Tehran share the goal of stopping Syrian-based militants in Iraq. But experts say it's Iran, not the United States, that will most influence how the new government in Baghdad approaches internal reforms and the war in Syria. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

AppleAndroid