African leaders in South Sudan for peace talks

2013-12-26 12:10
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta , left, and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, right, arrive for a meeting with South Sudanese President President Salva Kiir at State House in Juba. (File, AP)

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta , left, and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, right, arrive for a meeting with South Sudanese President President Salva Kiir at State House in Juba. (File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Juba - The leaders of Kenya and Ethiopia arrived in South Sudan on Thursday to try and mediate between the country's president and the political rivals he accuses of attempting a coup that the government insists sparked violence that has threatened to destroy the world's newest country.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn will meet with South Sudanese President Salva Kiir later on Thursday, said Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth.

World leaders have urged the country's leaders to stop the violence in which thousands are feared killed. The United States, Norway and Ethiopia are leading efforts to open peace talks between Kiir and his political rivals. Kiir said in a Christmas address that he is willing to "dialogue" with all his opponents.

The United Nations is investigating reports of mass killings since violence began spreading across South Sudan after a fight among the presidential guards on 15 December, pitting soldiers from Kiir's Dinka ethnic group against those from the Nuer ethnic group of former Vice President Riek Machar.

South Sudan's top UN humanitarian official, Toby Lanzer, said on Monday that he believes the death toll has surpassed 1 000.

Leuth, the information minister, said the government has not yet established formal contact with Machar, who has been accused of leading what the government insists was a failed coup plot, because "the rebel" was expected to first renounce violence.

"For us, we are not talking with him," he said, referring to Machar, whose whereabouts remain unknown.

Civil war fears

Government troops are trying to retake control of Bentiu, the capital of oil-rich Unity state, from forces loyal to Machar. There was also reported fighting overnight in Malakal, the capital of Upper Nile state, according to Lueth.

Upper Nile and Unity comprise the country's key oil-producing region, raising fears unrest there could cut off the country's economic lifeblood. South Sudan gets nearly 99% of its government budget from oil revenues.

"We are moving toward them and we will flush them out like we did in Bor," he said, referring to the capital of Jonglei state that government troops retook from renegade forces earlier in the week.

Although the capital, Juba, is now calm, fighting appears to spread across the country, stretching the limits of humanitarian workers and aid agencies. The UN humanitarian office said aid agencies need $166m to save lives amid continuing violence in South Sudan.

"The resources will be used to provide clean water and sanitation, health care, shelter, and deliver food and livelihood assistance," the office said in a statement.

"It will also ensure that the rights of vulnerable people, including survivors of violence, are better protected. The money will be used to manage sites for displaced people and transport aid workers and supplies to strategic locations where communities are most at risk."

Some 45 000 people have taken refuge in and around UN bases in the country and 81 000 people have fled their homes as a result of fighting that has raised fears of a civil war in South Sudan.

The county peacefully broke away from Sudan in 2011 following a 2005 peace deal. Before that, the south fought decades of war with Sudan. The country, one of the world's least developed, still has pockets of rebel resistance and sees cyclical, tribal clashes that result in hundreds of deaths.

- AP

Read more on:    un  |  salva kiir  |  uhuru kenyatta  |  south sudan  |  east africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
12 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Grabouw - 11:32 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS between Sir Lowrys Pass and Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Canon EOS 600D

The Canon EOS 600D Digital Camera puts the widely respected...

From R5389.95

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.