News / Africa

South Sudan Peace Talks Stuck on Issue of Detainees

Spokesperson for the South Sudanese rebels Hussein Maar Nyout addresses journalists during ongoing negotiations with the South Sudanese government, in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, Jan. 9, 2014.
Spokesperson for the South Sudanese rebels Hussein Maar Nyout addresses journalists during ongoing negotiations with the South Sudanese government, in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, Jan. 9, 2014.
Gabe Joselow
— Talks to bring peace to South Sudan appeared deadlocked Thursday as fighting between rival factions continues across the country. A political solution to the crisis remains elusive as neither side in the conflict will agree to budge on the issue of political detainees.
 
Delegations for South Sudanese rebels and the government remain in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, for talks aimed at ending nearly a month of violence across South Sudan.

The fighting sprang from a power struggle between South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and his chief rival, former vice president Riek Machar. Clashes that began in Juba on December 15 have since spread to other parts of the country, pitting rival divisions of the armed forces and allied militias against one another.
 
A spokesperson for the opposition’s negotiating team, Mabior Garang, said they are waiting for guidance from mediators before resuming the talks.
 
“We are here in the peace talks with an open mind, and so we are ready to see what the mediators are going to propose and then as a group we can come to a decision,” he said.
 
The East African group of nations known as IGAD is leading the mediation efforts. Three IGAD envoys visited with President Kiir in Juba on Wednesday to seek a way forward in the talks.
 
They also met with several political prisoners who were detained by the government in the first days of the crisis, accused of plotting a coup.
 
The opposition has insisted that the detainees - who include Machar’s political allies - be released before agreeing to a cessation of hostilities.
 
South Sudan foreign affairs spokesman Mawien Makol Arik, speaking by phone from Juba, said the government cannot accept those terms.
 
“The position of government is clear, that the detainees are not going to be released, they should not be released with the current efforts to find a way for the cessation of hostilities and finally a cease-fire,” he said.
 
Meantime, fighting has been reported this week in the rebel-held cities of Bor, capital of Jonglei State, and Bentiu in Unity State.
 
While the violence began as a political dispute, it has taken on ethnic dimension with targeted killings and attacks between supporters of Kiir, a Dinka, and Machar, from the Nuer community.
 
At least 1,000 people have been killed since the violence began, with more than 200,000 displaced.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid