News / Africa

IGAD Says South Sudan Peace 'Matrix' Signed, Opposition Says It's Not

The chief negotiator for the South Sudanese opposition, Taban Deng Gai, shown here at the peace talks in Addis Ababa in Jan. 2014, denies that his side has signed a blueprint for restoring peace in the young country.
The chief negotiator for the South Sudanese opposition, Taban Deng Gai, shown here at the peace talks in Addis Ababa in Jan. 2014, denies that his side has signed a blueprint for restoring peace in the young country.

East African bloc IGAD on Wednesday congratulated the South Sudanese government and opposition for signing a blueprint, called the matrix, to end an eight-month conflict that has claimed thousands of lives and driven the young country to the edge of famine.

IGAD said the "long-awaited" signing of the matrix means that the cessation of hostilities agreement that was signed on Jan. 23 will finally be put into action and "...the guns will be silenced and the senseless conflict in South Sudan will end."

Opposition: We didn't sign

But chief opposition negotiator, Taban Deng Gai, put a damper on IGAD's congratulatory mood, saying no one from his side signed the matrix.

"What we signed is a rededication to a document that we don’t know," he told South Sudan in Focus. "They talk of matrix, they talk of addendum, they talk of addendum to matrix. We told the (IGAD) envoy that the matrix itself is an addendum to the cessation of hostilities agreement."

Explaining later that the opposition refused to sign the document because IGAD was imposing it on them, Gai referred to it as a matrix agreement.

"The mediators, IGAD, should accept that they are failing," Gai said. "In forums, when you don't provide accepted solutions to the parties, if you impose a solution to the crisis, you are fuelling more the crisis. That is why we have decided not to sign the matrix."

The government’s lead negotiator, Nhial Deng Nhial, said the matrix was signed by both sides, "And they did not sign it behind closed doors."

"It was signed in front of the whole world with media there and in front of the leaders of IGAD," Nhial said.

The guns will be silenced and the senseless conflict in South Sudan will end.

Nhial said the question now was "...whether they (the opposition) will abide by it or not."

Under the terms of the matrix, both sides are required to immediately freeze the position of their forces and begin to disengage them. They will be helped in this by IGAD's Joint Technical Committee and by ceasefire monitoring teams, IGAD said.

IGAD said ending the fighting is key to building trust and confidence between the government and opposition so that multi-party talks, which will resume on Sept. 13, can finally make progress and bring lasting peace to South Sudan and allow the 1.7 million who have been displaced by the fighting to return home.
 

 

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: keah maloth kai from: khartoum sudan
August 30, 2014 4:38 PM
Why a so called igad worry about the refusal of signed blueprint by opposition party headed by d
#dr machar and #taban deng wizout withdrawal of foreigners troop inside the south sudan territory??.
and then congratulation to opposition party of their refusals to sign useless #igad document and its utters utmostly appreciateable to deng taban;
If the igad at wanted to detach up hostilities south sudan,let them order the foreigners troops to withdraw in the south land,if not?,no peace.
The igad were not serious to restores or delievers peace to the south sudanese,if they were utterly sincere to restores peace,they'll not use peace as sources of inflow or income to them.
my message to unheed #igad is that, if u'ren't to force out the foreigners troop,there is no so call gun silence or blueprint.

by: Thak Nguany from: Juba at Unimiss Camp.
August 29, 2014 4:14 AM
with present of Ugandan Army in South Sudan there will be no any achievment in peace talk.

by: Lisa from: Dallas
August 28, 2014 11:30 PM
How can comes that igad keep on changing terms now we are waiting for so call matrix agreement. In September let the truth be spoken igad will never bring peace to south Sudan. The people of southern Sudan know that kiir can't manage the country any more. The only solution to south Sudan, is it's people to stand up and vote out kiir.

by: Jacob from: Juba South Sudan
August 28, 2014 12:13 PM
IGAD and to be more precise President Yoweri Museveni, must stop playing with southern Sudanese Lives. Kiir Concocted a fake Coup, in order to use it as a pretext to get rid of his political opponents and instill a tribal Dictator. All one needs to see is the set up of the government of south sudan and you will notice Salva was trying to set up a Gogrial Kingdom. How can Kiir still be considered as a leader when, IDPs are scared of their very own Presidential Tiger Guards. Kiir is responsible for the massacre of 20,000 Nuers.

How do you expect the nuers to trust a government lead by him. When he Slaughtered them? The rebels demands are quite simple. Kiir must step down in order for genuine peace and reconciliation to take place otherwise this is only a temporary fix until the end of the transitional government duration. He tried to kill the SPLM-IO leadership, how do you expect them to trust him again and return to Juba and integrate their forces into the Malong and Kiir's Tribal Army. That is essential disarming them and setting a stage for Kiir's next Mood swing and Genocidal episode.

by: Kim Lony Gatluak from: JUBA SOUTH SUDAN
August 28, 2014 8:55 AM
We appreciated Dr Riek Machar Teny. For n't siging black text check. this war no end it's war Lord and least Salva kiir must step down we need peace without president Salva Kiir
In Response

by: De Nazario from: Thiet
August 29, 2014 10:56 AM
Kim, Kiir was elected by South Sudanese. Power hungry Riek is overtly deluded. Do not demand the impossible. That Kiir must step down as a precondition to signing the matrix of secession of hostilities is a tall order. Wake up or so you are tall to!

by: Kuch from: Bor
August 28, 2014 5:28 AM
Do these South Sudan's tribal armed rebels even know the word "matrix?" I guess not!

Instead of coming to their senses and let the South Sudanese people come back together and start the state of building their nation and reconciling each others; these criminals want to dictate the "matrix" of the negotiation.

They rebelled for no apparent reasons and they want to come back to South Sudan and the South Sudanese people whom they defected en-masse from!

Riek Machar and his tribal armed rebellion has told the South Sudanese people as to what they are fighting for exactly? Tell the South Sudanese people, what exactly you are fighting for and South Sudanese people honestly try their best to as to why this senseless war brought upon the innocent South Sudanese people!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fairi
X
Brian Padden
May 29, 2015 1:27 PM
With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs