south sudan army rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed
Last Updated : GMT 01:59:58
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Last Updated : GMT 01:59:58
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South Sudan army, rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed

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Arab Today, arab today South Sudan army, rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed

South Sudan army
Khartoum - Arab Today

South Sudan's army and the rebels have exchanged accusations of launching military attacks against each other despite a signed peace deal proposed by mediators.

"A government convoy of gunboats and ferries had attacked the rebel-held towns of Tayar and Ganylel in Unity State," Riek Machar, leader of the major rebel group in South Sudan, said in a statement late Thursday.

He condemned the government forces' behavior despite President Kiir's signing of a peace deal proposed by the Inter-Governmental Authority for Development in Africa (IGAD) to end the violence in the new-born state.

"The government offensive against the SPLM/SPLA is continuing despite Salva Kiir signing the agreement on resolution of the conflict in South Sudan," Machar said.

However, South Sudan government has denied that its forces attacked rebel-held positions, accusing the rebels of attacking army posts.

"It was the rebels attacking the SPLA in Nhialdiu and the SPLA repulsed them. There are casualties but we don't have the details up to now," South Sudanese local media on Friday quoted South Sudan army spokesman Philip Aguer.

He reiterated the army's commitment to the ceasefire stipulated in the peace deal, but stressed that the government forces would fight in self-defense if the rebels attacked them.

In the meantime, observers expressed concern that the newly signed peace deal would not survive just like the previous ones under the non-commitment of the two warring parties due to their insincerity to implement the items of those agreements.

"We are very concerned that this agreement will collapse as it is very fragile and its items seem very difficult to be implemented," Peter Adok, South Sudanese political analyst, told Xinhua Friday.

"South Sudan government has deep reservations about some items of the agreement and regards it as a reward for the rebels," he said.

He said "the rebel leaders, on their part, do not trust the intentions of Kiir's government, and therefore, we do not expect the rebel leader Riek Machar to come to Juba to implement the items of the agreement and assume his tasks as vice-president."

Meanwhile, media leakages on Thursday disclosed that Juba government has handed a document to the IGAD mediators comprising of the government's reservations on 16 items of the peace deal signed by President Kiir last Wednesday.

According to the media leakages, Juba's main objection is on the post of first vice-president suggested to be assumed by the rebel leader Machar.

Juba also objects on the power shares in Unity, Upper Nile and Jonglei which are the major oil-producing states in South Sudan.

The South Sudanese government also objected to the demilitarization of the capital, with no troops allowed within a 25-kilometre radius of Juba, regarding the matter as touching the national sovereignty.

Last week, Machar signed the IGAD proposed peace deal with the secretary general of the ruling party, Pagan Amum, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, but President Kiir refused to sign it and demanded a two-week extension.

However, on Wednesday, Kiir signed the deal in Juba, but warned that it could collapse.

"The current peace we are signing today has so many things we have to reject," Kiir said when addressing the signing ceremony.

The IGAD's proposed peace document granted the current government a majority in the legislature, the position of president and 53 percent of ministerial portfolios.

It further proposed for the rebels a new position of first vice president and 33 percent of ministerial portfolios, while the remaining 14 percent was allotted for the other opposition groups.

However, with regard to the major war-affected areas of the Greater Upper Nile region (Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity States), the document suggested 53 percent to go to the rebels and 33 for the current government.

South Sudan plunged into violence in December 2013 when fighting erupted between troops loyal to President Kiir and defectors led by his former deputy Machar.

The conflict soon turned into an all-out war, with the violence taking on an ethnic dimension. The clashes killed thousands of South Sudanese and forced around 1.9 million to flee their homes.

Source: XINHUA

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south sudan army rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed south sudan army rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed

 



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south sudan army rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed south sudan army rebels exchange accusations despite peace deal signed

 



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