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IGAD ministers to discuss S Sudan latest problems today

Author: Emmanuel Akile | Published: Monday, August 9, 2021

Dr. Mariam Alsadig Almahdi, chairperson of IGAD Council of Ministers and the minister of Foreign Affairs of Sudan, speaking to reporters in Juba recently | Credit | Eye Radio

The IGAD Council of Ministers is expected to hold an extraordinary virtual meeting on Monday to discuss the current conflicts between factions of the SPLM/A-IO.

This comes after the reported growing tensions within the party to the revitalized peace agreement, SPLM-IO.

Last week, clashes were reported after SPLA-IO allied to Gen. Simon Gatwech and Gen. Johnson Olony removed Dr. Riek Machar as the commander-in-chief of SPLA-IO in a declaration issued at Magenis.

Both sides have accused each other of starting the fight. At least 34 soldiers have been reported killed from both sides following clashes in Magenis.

Hostilities between the two factions of the IO started last week after a group of military generals claimed to have ousted First Vice President Riek Machar as head of the SPLM-IO and commander in chief of the SPLA-IO.

Those top generals include former chief of staff General Simon Gatwech Dual, General Johnson Olony of Sector One Command, and General Thomas Mabor Dhoal of Sector Three Command.

They declared Gen Gatwech interim leader of the opposition.

Activists described the latest confrontations as a negative development that undermines the process for transitioning to peace.

They also called on the conflicting parties to cease military confrontations now and resolve their grievances in a non-violent manner.

In a statement seen by Eye Radio, the chairperson of IGAD council of ministers and the minister of foreign affairs of Sudan, Dr. Mariam Alsadig Almahdi, called for an emergency extra-ordinary meeting of the council this morning.

The virtual meeting is expected to focus on the current status of the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement in South Sudan.

This includes the growing tension among senior members of the SPLM/A-IO, recent swearing-in of members of the transitional national legislature and the graduation of the necessary unified forces among others.

Those expected to attend the meeting are foreign affairs ministers of Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda, and South Sudan.

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