News / Africa

    S. Sudan Warring Parties Ready for Another Round of Talks

    FILE - South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar (R) and South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (L) exchange signed peace agreement documents in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, May 9, 2014.
    FILE - South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar (R) and South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (L) exchange signed peace agreement documents in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, May 9, 2014.
    Gabe Joselow

    New peace talks between South Sudan's warring parties have been delayed by at least a day, as the two sides prepare for another round of negotiations.  Hopes for a lasting peace are pinned to the process, which has repeatedly failed to end the seven-month conflict.

    The talks between South Sudan's government and the rebel opposition were scheduled to resume Wednesday in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

    FILE - South Sudanese information minister, Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Jan. 5, 2014.FILE - South Sudanese information minister, Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Jan. 5, 2014.
    x
    FILE - South Sudanese information minister, Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Jan. 5, 2014.
    FILE - South Sudanese information minister, Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Jan. 5, 2014.


    South Sudan government spokesman Michael Makuei Lueth says negotiators, just getting back to work after the Eid holiday break, needed more time to prepare for the talks.  But he says they do expect to have a team ready in the coming days.

     
    The negotiations were initially due to resume last month, but were delayed because of opposition demands that civil society and diaspora groups be allowed to take part as stakeholders.
     
    Makuei says the government has no issue with those demands.
     
    "For us, as the government, we don't care as to who participates and who does what.  What we want is peace.  So if increasing the number of the participants and so forth or the stakeholders will bring peace so be it," he said.
     
    Two spokesmen for the opposition also confirmed the talks had been delayed at the government's request, but that their side is ready to resume negotiations when called.

    FILE - Thousands of people wait in the hot sun near the air drop zone in Leer, South Sudan, July 5, 2014.FILE - Thousands of people wait in the hot sun near the air drop zone in Leer, South Sudan, July 5, 2014.
    x
    FILE - Thousands of people wait in the hot sun near the air drop zone in Leer, South Sudan, July 5, 2014.
    FILE - Thousands of people wait in the hot sun near the air drop zone in Leer, South Sudan, July 5, 2014.

    Tens of thousands of people have been killed in South Sudan since a political conflict between President Salva Kiir and his main rival Riek Machar descended into inter-ethnic violence in December.

    ​The two sides have agreed to three separate cease-fire agreements in talks organized by the East African group of nations IGAD, but all of the deals have been violated soon after signing.

     
    David Deng, research director for the South Sudan Law Society, says there is measured optimism about these talks, despite their failure to produce a lasting deal so far.
     
    "I think people are sober in terms of how they assess the possibilities for peace coming out of the process, but at the same time hopeful and I think aware that there's no other game in town and there's a lot riding on this process," he said.
     
    An agreement in June called for a transitional government that was to be established by the second week of August.  But, because of delays to the negotiations and continued fighting, that deadline is unlikely to be met.
     
    Deng says in order for the two sides to move toward substantive matters of reconciliation, there must first be a lasting ceasefire.
     
    "A very important thing to watch out for is the responses of the groups on the ground in the coming days and weeks. And if we can see them hold off in terms of aggressive action toward one another, then hopefully that can leave enough room for parties to begin engaging on some of these political questions moving forward," he said.
     
    According to the United Nations, more than one million South Sudanese have been displaced by violence since the conflict began, while aid agencies have warned that some parts of the country are at risk of falling into famine.
     

    You May Like

    Top US General: Turkish Media Report ‘Absurd'

    General Dunford rejects ‘irresponsible' claims of coup involvement by former four-star Army General Campbell, who led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring earlier this year

    Video Saving Ethiopian Children Thought to Be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at efforts of one African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children

    Protests Over Western Troops Threaten Libyan 'Unity' Government

    Fears mount that Islamist foes of ‘unity' government plan to declare a revolutionaries' council in Tripoli

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: William Lual from: Az
    July 31, 2014 6:06 AM
    Please Mr.President and Dr. Riek except peace our people were suffering for long in the hands of Arab and now in your owned hand. Give peace a chance and stops the bleeding . We are tried of war without courses and justication. Please Lord have mercy to the children of Cush. Give our leaders piece of mind and blessed the heart to agree on peace and love to their people.

    by: Dengtaath from: Greater Akobo state
    July 31, 2014 3:12 AM
    It will be resumed sucessfuly but if government does not stop bring stakeholders to the table it is going to the same like the other talk failed last with no conclusion
    Remember government bombardment of rebel position will lead to attack from rebel and peace talk may not go well.

    by: Lisa from: Tx
    July 30, 2014 6:01 PM
    Please Jesus, let their be a new chapter we need a change in the country, so that the killing of the innocent stop. Let salva accept that he can not bring peace but to step aside. Divine mercy here my prayers. Let Dr riek lead your people for this time, you know his heart better.no more politicking but a vote for peace .

    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.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    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 Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    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 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 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.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora