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IGAD confident fresh South Sudan peace talks will succeed

By LONAH KIBET | August 14th 2014

Nairobi, Kenya: Fresh talks concerning the South Sudan crisis are ongoing following the failed agreement on the formation of a government of national unity within 60 days.

The agreement between South Sudan president Salva Kiir and opposition leader Riek Machar, signed in May and reinforced in June, elapsed August 10 but Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) has expressed confidence in the current negotiations.

Ethiopia's Foreign Minister and IGAD Council of Ministers chairperson Tedros Adhanom said the talks were slow but making notable progress unlike before.

“The agreement was not fully respected because the opposition had been adamant but it’s a good sign that these talks have started and the parties are involved,” said Dr. Adhanom during a press briefing Wednesday evening.

Foreign affairs Cabinet secretary Amina Abdalla said the multi-stakeholder negotiations have set clear agenda and will provide short, medium and long term solutions to the concerns.

Head for Special Envoys for South Sudan, Peace Mediation, Seyoum Mesfin said some progress had been realised in the country.

“There is reduced intensity of hostility and release of the detainees by the government,” said Amb. Mesfin.

The conflict killed hundreds of innocent civilians, displaced about 1.5 million and placed more than 7 million at risk of hunger and disease.

The briefing followed an earlier meeting between IGAD Council of Ministers and special envoys for the South Sudan Mediation concerning the situation in the South Sudan and a call for humanitarian assistance in Somalia.

The two countries are facing looming famine due to the hostilities that hindered farming.

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