Kiir and Machar in Khartoum for new round of talks - The East African

Kiir and Machar in Khartoum for new round of talks

Monday June 25 2018

riek machar, salva kiir, south sudan

A combo photo of South Sudan President Salva Kiir (left) and the leader of South Sudan’s largest rebel group and former Vice-President Riek Machar. FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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South Sudan President Salva Kiir arrived in Khartoum Monday morning for a new round of peace talks with his rival Riek Machar.

Dr Machar had arrived in Khartoum on Sunday evening for the talks to be presided over by host President Omar Bashir.

The talks will be also be attended by the Troika countries; the US, the UK and Norway.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, the European Union and the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) are also party to the Khartoum talks.

The recent resolution

"This is as per the invitation of the Sudanese President H.E. Omar Hassan Al Bashir and in line with the recent resolution of the IGAD heads of state and government to continue with the face to face meeting in order to reach an agreement," Dr Machar's envoy to Tanzania, Mr Peter Kleto, said. 

Mr Kleto said the Khartoum meeting aimed at closing the gaps in the Igad bridging proposal.

He dismissed claims that Dr Machar would not participate in any future government in South Sudan.

"For your information, the call to bar Dr Riek Machar from participating in any future transitional government will never materialise because it is not the position of the citizens of South Sudan from whom the power derives.

A power wrangle

"The message is written on the wall with big letters: NO Dr Riek Machar, NO Peace. Thank you," he added. 

South Sudan attained independence from Sudan in 2011 but descended into a civil war two years later.

The war erupted following a power wrangle between President Kiir and his former deputy Dr Machar.

The war has caused one of the largest humanitarian crises in the continent, according to the UN.

About 2 million South Sudanese have become refugees in neighbouring countries.

The International Crisis Group estimates that more than 100,000 lives have been lost in the young nation from from 2013 to 2015 alone.