28 Jun What next for South Sudan’s peace agreement?
Agreement provides a transitional unity government within four months which will govern the country for 36 months.
The deal, signed by President Salva Kiir and former vice president Riek Machar, was reached in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, in the presence of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.
The latest agreement increases hopes that peace may soon be reached to end the country’s four-and-a-half years civil war, which has killed tens of thousands, left millions near famine, and created Africa’s largest refugee crisis since the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
“The ceasefire will end the war in South Sudan and opens a (new) page,” Machar told journalists after the signing ceremony.
The agreement calls for the opening of corridors for humanitarian aid, the release of prisoners of war and political detainees, the withdrawal of forces, and a transitional unity government to be formed within four months which will govern the country for 36 months.
It also allows members of the African Union and the East African regional bloc, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) – that has been pushing peace efforts – to “deploy the necessary forces to supervise the agreed permanent ceasefire.”
“The agreement is a shift in position especially with President Salva Kiir who previously said he doesn’t expect to work with Riek Machar in the same government,” Chatham House researcher on South Sudan Ahmed Soliman told Aljazeera.
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