Hope rises for South Sudan deal

The Church of England - - News -

SOUTH SUDAN Pres­i­dent Salva Kiir and for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Riek Machar have signed an agree­ment to end the civil war in South Sudan.

On 9 May 2014 a cease fire agree­ment was signed in Ad­dis Ababa to end the tribal con­flict that has left thou­sands dead and driven al­most a half mil­lion people from their homes.

The Pri­mate of the Epis­co­pal Church of South Sudan and Sudan the Most Rev Daniel Deng Bul, ac­com­pa­nied by his Ro­man Catholic coun­ter­part Arch­bishop Paulino Lukudu Loro, and the Mod­er­a­tor of the Pres­by­te­rian Church of South Sudan, the Rt Rev Peter Gai Lual Mar­row, joined the talks bro­kered by Ethiopian Prime Min­is­ter Haile­mariam De­salegn, the African Union, the In­ter-Gov­ern­men­tal Author­ity on De­vel­op­ment and the US and Bri­tish gov­ern­ments.

Mark Sim­monds, Bri­tish for­eign min­is­ter for Africa, wel­comed the ac­cord as “long over­due” but added it was “es­sen­tial that both sides en­sure its im­me­di­ate im­ple­men­ta­tion and take full re­spon­si­bil­ity for the forces un­der their con­trol. Only with con­tin­ued en­gage­ment and the gen­uine com­mit­ment of both sides will South Sudan be able to pull back from catas­tro­phe,” he said.

“This con­flict has caused in­nu­mer­able deaths, forced hun­dreds of thou­sands of people from their homes, and brought the coun­try to the brink of famine.”

While on a visit to Juba last week the Rev Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, gen­eral sec­re­tary of the WCC, stated: “Churches in South Sudan have a sig­nif­i­cant role in na­tional di­a­logue, af­firm­ing unity and a sense of na­tion-build­ing by strength­en­ing a process of rec­on­cil­i­a­tion.”

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