Juba, South Sudan
Questions continue to arise concerning the role Sudan (North) leader Omar Al Bashir is playing in the crisis South Sudan is facing.
In the past, there have been reports that as SPLA was fighting Khartoum for independence, Machar who then was leading a splinter rebel movement enjoyed very good relations with Bashir .
Machar has always been a rebel to SPLA. In 2011 , he joined hands with SPLA and joined government as Vice President.He enjoys benefits from very good support Khartoum provides. Is it possible that he is being funded as well?
It is not yet clear whether that relationship has carried on to this day. Upon lending in Juba, Bashir proclaimed that ”
“Khartoum ready to offer ‘everything in its power’ to ensure success of talks aimed at ending violence in South Sudan.”
How sincere that statement is , remains to be seen but ceasefire talks to end fighting in South Sudan are said to be painstakingly slow in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Omar Al Bashir is an international outlaw whose warrant for arrest by ICC is still active.If President Kiir feels that Bashir is supporting his rival, can he facilitate an arrest on Bashir?
South Sudan won independence from Khartoum in 2011 after decades of conflict [AFP]
|Today Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has arrived in South Sudan, as negotiators in Ethiopia began a process of direct ceasefire talks to end weeks of fighting.”There should be peace and security in South Sudan,” Bashir said as he visited Juba for talks with his counterpart President Salva Kiir.”We come so that we can bring peace to South Sudan, to our brothers and sisters in South Sudan. Our relationship is very important,” Bashir told reporters.Radio Omdurman said on Sunday that Bashir would meet President Kiir in Juba for talks on the conflict affecting the world’s youngest country.”President Bashir will go to Juba to meet (President) Salva Kiir and discuss the crisis in the South,” it announced in an SMS message to media outlets, news agency AFP reported.
Earlier, the foreign ministry spokesman in Khartoum reaffirmed Sudan’s wish to see “a continuation of the political process aimed at finding a peaceful resolution to the conflict in South Sudan”.
He also underlined Sudan’s willingness “to offer everything in its power to ensure success of the initiative by IGAD”, the East African regional bloc brokering the talks.
The diplomatic effort is aimed at ending three weeks of fighting in South Sudan that has left thousands dead and about 200,000 people displaced.
Direct peace talks began on Monday after days of trying to get the rival delegations in to the same room, AFP news agency quoted Ethiopia’s government spokesman as saying.
The conflict in South Sudan erupted on December 15, pitting army units loyal to Kiir against a loose alliance of ethnic armed groups and mutinous army commanders nominally headed by Riek Machar, a former vice president who was sacked last July.
Machar denies allegations that he started the conflict by attempting a coup, and in turn accuses the president of orchestrating a violent purge.
UN officials say they believe thousands of people have already been killed, and both sides are alleged to have committed atrocities.
UN peacekeeping bases have also been overwhelmed with civilians seeking shelter, many of them fleeing ethnic violence between Kiir’s Dinka community and Machar’s Nuer tribe.