Monday December 11, 2017

“The conflict is so cruel that nobody has even indicated whether they hold prisoners of war” – Gen Seyum Mesfin

ADDIS ABABA – The IGAD chief mediator, General Seyoum Mesfin has expressed sadness and worry over the continuation of the South Sudan conflict saying the retribution and destruction caused by both sides is immeasurable and risk consuming the new nation and the region.
Mesfin, speaking to media during the commemoration of the conflict in Addis Ababa appealed to the warring parties not to return to violence, retribution and destruction of the future of the country. He said that peace is needed more than ever by South Sudanese and the best gift for them in 2015 is for them to live free of violence.

“A year has passed since the terrible conflict in South Sudan consumed our region, and the world’s newest country.We, your neighbours and friends, feel great sadness that the crisis continues; we feel your grief and despair at this most difficult time in the life of your country.Today, there is still much uncertainty about South Sudan,’’ Seyoum said.

Seyoum said that there are too many combatants who have lost their lives and immeasurable number of innocent civilians. He asked the warring parties to put the interest of the nation first.

“Until today, nobody knows how many thousands have been killed, the war is so cruel that nobody has even indicated whether they hold prisoners of war…Let us make this last, appalling year of horror and tragedy, not an indicator of South Sudan’s future but a shocking reminder of the dangers of choosing war over peace, division over harmony, destruction over creation and hate over empathy.These choices have caused so much suffering; let us not continue these mistakes any longer,’’- he said.

IGAD, The East African bloc has been mediating the peace process in South Sudan since the crisis erupted in December 2013, pitting Dinka of President Kiir against Nuer of his former Deputy, Dr Riek Machar.
The next phase of the Addis Ababa peace talks between the two rivals will start in few days, according to the chief mediator Seyoum.

 

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