Igad reaches out to South Sudan rival parties

By The Eastafrican

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The Inter-governmental Authority on Development has started behind the scenes consultations regarding the outstanding issues in the South Sudan peace process to ensure success of the next phase of negotiations to be held in March.

Igad Council of Ministers led by Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Workneh Gebeyehu, the Special Envoy for South Sudan Ismail Wais, and the facilitators are currently engaged in a shuttle diplomacy in an effort to assist the parties to cede ground so as to will resolve the outstanding issues which saw the talks stall on February 16.

“This will enable the parties to continue their intensive engagements and consultations on all of the outstanding issues, especially on responsibility sharing and the key security arrangements necessary for ending the conflict,” said Abdullahi Busuri, the Igad Programme Manager.

Talks in Addis Ababa were suspended when opposition parties demanded that President Salva Kiir be excluded from the transitional arrangement, while the government delegation insisted on maintaining the status quo.

Security arrangements to enforce the cessation of hostilities agreement signed in December last year, restructuring of the transitional government and the power-sharing ratio are the three key outstanding issues.