Voice of America (Washington, DC)

31 March 2014

South Sudan: Peace Talks Suspended Again

South Sudan's Minister of Information is accusing the United States of interfering in its internal affairs by trying to influence the outcome of ... ( Resource: South Sudan Accuses U.S. of Meddling in Peace Process

South Sudan's slow-moving peace talks have been suspended again, this time at the request of mediators from the Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD), an opposition official said Monday.

"They said they want to go and consult with the heads of IGAD and they will give us a break of one month up to the 30th of April," Hussein Maar Nyuot, a spokesman for opposition negotiators at the talks in Addis Ababa, told VOA.

When the talks reconvene, opposition and government negotiators will sign an agenda and declaration of principles, before getting down to the business of hammering out a peace deal, Maar Nyuot said.

IGAD officials declined to comment on the new adjournment but said they would release a statement later Monday.

The government side at the talks said it will comment once the IGAD statement has been released.

Maar Nyuot said that during the break of several weeks the parties will share the statement of principles with interested parties. The opposition spokesman said they will work to resolve outstanding issues that have prevented the talks from getting off the ground, including whether seven former political detainees should be included in the negotiations.

The anti-government negotiators have also protested Uganda's inclusion as an observer at the talks, claiming that troops from Uganda - South Sudan's southern neighbor - are fighting alongside government forces.

The two opposing sides in South Sudan's conflict signed a cessation of hostilities agreement in late January, before the first round of talks ended. But what was supposed to be an immediate ceasefire, with both sides ordering their troops to stop fighting, never took hold.

The second round of talks has struggled to get under way, even as fighting continued almost unabated in South Sudan at the cost of thousands of lives, devastation around the country, and more than a million people being forced from their homes.

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2014 Voice of America. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.