September 27, 2016 (JUBA) – South Sudan government has started soliciting for support from countries in the region not to host and provide military support to a rebel groups with ambitions to oust the Juba regime through unconstitutional means.
- Riek Machar sits in his field office in a rebel controlled territory in Jonglei State February 1, 2014. (Photo/Reuters/Goran Tomasevic)
The presidential advisor on security affairs disclosed that officials from the world’s youngest nation have approached regional leaders, particularly countries with interest in the country, over the matter.
“There is a peace agreement which is being implemented already. This is the agreement which was mediated by the countries in the region,” Tut Kew Gatluak told Sudan Tribune Monday.
“These countries [in the region] now need to continue to support the implementation of peace and isolate those who are against it. They should host and provide any kind of support, whether be it political and military support to those against the implementation of peace agreement,” he added.
According to the official, South Sudan is now appealing to countries within the region immediately expel rebel groups within its territories.
“They [should] really try their best to discourage such people and convince them to join peace”, stressed the presidential advisor.
Gatluak is the first senior government official to react to a report in which the leadership of armed opposition under the ousted first vice president and leader, Riek Machar, announced resumption of armed struggle after holding a consultative meeting in Khartoum.
Machar, who is currently in Khartoum after fleeing Juba on July 11, has been denied asylum in Ethiopia where he had hoped to take refuge after completing treatment from a Khartoum-based hospital.
Last week, the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, told reporters on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York, that Addis Ababa “does not need someone who is leading an armed struggle on its soil.”
Ethiopia, after the civil war broke out in Juba in December 2013, played an important role in mediating peace to end conflict in South Sudan and also hosted Machar for most of the two-and-a-half years of the peace negotiations led by the regional bloc (IGAD). However, Addis Ababa is now bowing to pressure from Juba and the dynamics of the deployment of the UN-backed regional protection force.
Ethiopia was supposed to provide the bulk of the 4,000 troops and this was going to complicate their participation, if the country gives asylum to Machar, who is still determined to wage armed struggle.
South Sudan President Salva Kiir removed Machar from his position and replaced him with his former lead negotiator, Taban Deng Gai, as the country’s first vice president, citing his prolonged absence.
Machar is also experiencing difficulties with his political activities in Sudan after authorities stopped him from holding a press conference in Khartoum following a week-long leadership meeting that explored the ongoing political crisis in South Sudan.
Sudan’s information minister, Ahmed Bilal Osman said Machar was in Khartoum for treatment and would not be permitted to conduct political activities.
He, however, said Khartoum was waiting for the implementation of the security arrangements so that Machar returns to South Sudan.
Machar vowed he would only to return to the South Sudanese capital, after the deployment of the regional protection force, which Juba appears to be reluctant to accept as a boost to the 12,000-strong UN peacekeeping force in the young nation.
According to a UN Security Council resolution, the protection force is supposed to act as a buffer between President Kiir’s soldiers and those of Machar as well as secure humanitarian supply lines and key installations.
September 27, 2016 (KHARTOUM) – South Sudan on Monday urged Khartoum to ban political and media activities of SPLM-IO leader and former First Vice President Riek Machar.
- South Sudanese ambassador in Khartoum Mayan Dut Waal
On Monday, South Sudan’s Ambassador to Khartoum Mayan Dut Waal, said he was surprised to see the Sudanese government allowing Machar to declare war against his government.
Machar ’’cannot declare war on the South Sudan’s government from Khartoum,’’ Waal said.
“We were surprised because when Machar arrived to Khartoum it was on the pretext of humanitarian propaganda. Also, a week ago, Khartoum said it would not allow Machar to exercise any media or political activity. However from 20 to 23 September Machar held a meeting for his group in Khartoum, ” he said
“Now we have all the meeting papers and recommendations, Khartoum is the place of meeting indicated in the documents, which are signed by Machar himself,” he added..
The South Sudanese diplomat went further to say that Khartoum is misleading Juba when it pledges to restrict the activities of the opposition leader.
“This means that Khartoum is fooling us,” he said.
Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour has anticipated the South Sudanese accusations and declared his government would not allow the armed opposition to attack the neighboring country from Sudan.
He further stressed that his government is supporting regional efforts to bring peace in the South Sudan.
AMBASSADOR DEMANDS PROTECTION
In a separate development, Ambassador Waal said he has asked the Sudanese government to provide police bodyguards to protect him, pointing that he feels unsafe in Khartoum.
“I have sent a letter to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs requesting providing personal protection and we wait the feedback,” he said .
Last Saturday, the ambassador was attacked by some South Sudanese while he was shopping in Khartoum’s down town.
The diplomat pointed that he only feels safe inside the embassy which is protected by police.
when reached by Sudan tribune for comment, Foreign Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ambassador Gharib Allah Khidir said said that the request of the South Sudanese ambassador request is “normal’’.
“Any diplomat who feels unsafe requests the ministry of foreign affairs to protect his diplomatic mission and residence,” he said without further details on the response of his government to this demand.