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Uhuru leads talks to save South Sudan

29 May 2015, 16:00 William Korir

Nairobi - President Uhuru Kenyatta has hosted talks between various stakeholders in a mission to end the current conflict affecting South Sudan.

President Kenyatta Friday oversaw the start of a new initiative in the efforts to stabilise South Sudan that will see two parallel peace processes merged.

Former senior political detainees who were released through President Kenyatta’s intervention during the early days of the conflict in South Sudan will also play a bigger role in reconciling the warring factions. 

Speaking at State House, Nairobi, after a lengthy meeting attended by representatives of the IGAD peace process, the Arusha peace talks and 10 former SPLM officials, President Kenyatta announced that the South Sudan peace process will now have a new impetus to bring the war to an end. 

Ethiopia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Tedros Adhanom, who is the chairman of the IGAD Council of Ministers and Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, represented IGAD while the Secretary General of Tanzania’s ruling party, CCM, Hon. Abdirahman Kinana and special envoys from South Africa represented the guarantors of the Arusha Accord.

The two South African envoys were Amb. Reddy Mampane and Amb. Mandlenkosi Memela. The IGAD peace process has been going on for two years but has been marked by lack of adherence to agreements by the two warring sides led by President Salva Kiir and his former Vice President Riek Machar. See also: Relief for patients in Machakos as hospital gets new machines The Arusha peace talks to re-unify SPLM were an initiative by Tanzania and South Africa with an aim to reunite the SPLM. Despite being complimentary to each other, the two processes have not resulted in an end to the conflict. 

It is for this reason that President Kenyatta had embarked on a mission to merge the two peace processes so that they can have one focus. He had also said that the former political detainees should play a bigger role in reconciliation process without taking sides. Today, the President announced that the two processes have been merged and the former detainees will go back home to start reconciling President Kiir and Mr Machar. 

“Today, the two processes have come together and the former detainees who have been in Nairobi are ready to go back home to bring peace back to their country by reconciling the warring leaders,” he said when he addressed a press conference at State House.

South Sudan has been in conflict since last year after two opposing sides led by current president Salva Kiir and former Vice President Riek Machar went to war over control of the country and its resources.

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