“In South Sudan, more clashes have broken out between government and opposition forces. This time in the town of Yei, south of Juba, towards the Ugandan border. Supporters of former vice president Riek Machar say they were attacked by fighters loyal to President Salva Kiir. The clashes come a day after the opposition captured the nearby county of Lasu. Local media are reporting more fighting has also broken out in Juba, and the northern and western parts of the country” (CCTV Africa, 2016)
“South Sudan’s ambassador to Uganda Samuel Luate Lominsuk has castigated media reports that President Salva Kiir finally accepted extra foreign troops into his country. This comes in following the IGAD summit that was held over the weekend in Ethiopia’s capital Adis Ababa. Amb. Lominsuk exclusively tells WBS TV that there were three requests that were put forward by IGAD including protection of humanitarian and relief on top of the military corridors by the UN. WBS’ Jocylynne Nakibuule had a one – on – one with the ambassador and now reports” (WBS TV Uganda, 2016).
“The government says the Uganda Peoples’ Defense Forces is ready to deploy in South Sudan .The confirmation comes days after the East African regional bloc, IGAD announced that S.Sudan’s President Salva Kiir had agreed to having a regional force stationed in Juba to help quell the upsurge in fighting in the world’s youngest nation.
Meanwhile , the US government has proposed that the UN Security Council approves the deployment of 4000 strong force in the country” (NTV Uganda, 2016)
The Secretary-General welcomes the communique of the Heads of State and Government of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Plus countries.
NEW YORK, United States of America, August 8, 2016 – The Secretary-General welcomes the communique of the Heads of State and Government of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Plus countries. He commends the IGAD leaders for their decisive action and welcomes the Government of South Sudan’s acceptance of a regional protection force. He calls on all South Sudanese leaders to set aside their personal differences and demonstrate their commitment to the implementation of the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan, which remains the only viable path to ending the crisis.
The Secretary-General remains deeply concerned about the continued fighting in the country and calls for an immediate end to the hostilities. He is outraged by the continued reports of serious human rights violations and abuses, including widespread sexual violence against women and young girls, committed by armed men in uniform. He calls on all parties to uphold their responsibility to protect civilians and demands that they take immediate steps to hold accountable those responsible for these despicable crimes.
The Secretary-General reiterates his commitment to work with all South Sudanese, IGAD, the African Union and international partners, to implement the recommendations of today’s summit.
Here we go again… and again. With more helmets, but what do these helmets really do? Fixing the bows and arrows or making sure the PoC sites are safe?
What where about to happen today:
“The Assembly of Heads of State and Government IGAD and the African Union Ad-hoc Committee on South Sudan, referred to as the IGAD Plus will this afternoon hold a Summit meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to deliberate on the prevailing situation in South Sudan. The meeting will be chaired by H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and current Chairperson of the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government with the attendance of Heads of State from the region and representatives from the UN, African Union, JMEC and IGAD” (IGAD Secretariat, 05.08.2016).
There been indicated from numerous sources that the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) who are holding a conference on the crisis in South Sudan have reported that the IGAD Plus heads of state has decided that the nation should accept 500 Peacekeepers in the Country.
IGAD Maagoub Maalim wanted it to be a ‘protective force’, that ‘we’re to prepare and implement of the Peace Agreement of 2015. That the forces we’re to ‘protection of civilians and on humanitarian issues’; the way the peacekeepers will be hashed out through the South Sudan Army Chiefs and the GoSS. The peacekeepers are not there to keep Dr. Riek Machar safe, but keep the Peace Agreement implemented.
The FVP Gen. Taban Deng Gai will stepdown when Dr. Riek Machar will return to Juba, as he said also in the days before he where swore in. But the initial reports of the IGAD Plus hasn’t said anything of the new cabinet under the TGoNU as the changes of getting rid of loyal Ministers from SPLM-IO have not been stated. As the loyalty to President Salva Kiir Mayardit is the ones behind before the GoSS delegation travelled to Addis Ababa.
What this will really mean for the fragile situation and the armies on the ground is not easy to say. As Dr. Riek Machar and his loyal soldiers is not part of the intervention and in the main discussion other than a bystander at the giant party in Ethiopia. The reality is that 500 peacekeepers can do something, but who pays for the battalions in South Sudan? Who of the noble leaders have state-coffers to sustain the extra mission? Who of the IGAD Plus have the manpower to fulfil the duty of having men stationed in Juba and beyond?
Are this a plan for President Kiir to get President Museveni to send his 500 UPDF soldiers to make sure the SPLA under him safe and sound while working under the paradigm of continuation of Kiir Government in Juba? That is just my conspiracy as the initial speculations to why President Museveni is so against Arms-Embargo as his fellow neighbour. We all know that Museveni might has interests to have a weapon trading partner; not just selling fruit-juice and beers from Kampala.
We can all over time see what this will have to say for the young nation. If this is just lose talk to silence the neighbours or sincere approach to generate a sort of peace between the fighting brothers. Peace.
The Peace Agreement of 2015 deteriorates as the newly formed government takes place and the torn relationship between Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO). As the start of July the new violence erupted between the two parties of President Kiir and his First Vice President Machar. Here is the newest:
“The president of South Sudan, Salva Kiir, has sacked six ministers allied to his long-time rival, Riek Machar. He has replaced them with people linked to a breakaway faction of Mr Machar’s SPLM-IO party. The posts include the key interior and petroleum ministries. Correspondents say this will further fuel the tension between Mr Kiir and Mr Machar. Their forces have engaged in renewed fighting during the past three weeks. The United Nations says this has caused a further sixty-thousand people to flee South Sudan, and is pushing the country towards a humanitarian catastrophe” (BBC Africa, 03.08.2016).
So with the loyalist from SPLM-IO have been sacked by President Salva Kiir as the problems between Dr. Riek Machar and him continues with new battles that happen in Juba in early July and to this day. This show the worrying signs of a new conflict between the Executive Kiir and the rebel Machar. Even with two years of military conflict between the parties and the peace agreement of late 2015; this also leads to massive amounts of refugees from South Sudan are estimated at the levels of 60,000 who have crossed to neighbour countries. 30,000 have crossed to Uganda alone. So the need for Humanitarian assistance to the refugee camps in Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia needs funding for the newly arrived refugees there. Together with the food-drops from UN World Food Program who has been raided their main storage houses in Juba, therefore the new tactic for food delivery is dropping food over areas to stop the humanitarian crisis happening with the military operations in the country; as the levels of cholera is also rising as reported by UNICEF.
A report on Cholera:
“At least 522 cases and 17 people have died because of a cholera outbreak in South Sudan, according to the ‘Situation Report #15 on Cholera in South Sudan’, from July 30, 2016. The Ministry of Health announced a suspected outbreak of the water-borne illness on July 18, 2016” (South Sudan Today, 01.08.2016).
There are also reports like this:
Makuei made the remarks after a Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) meeting in Khartoum during which the commission concluded that South Sudan’s August 2015 peace deal is at the verge of collapse and demanded immediate intervention.“I think there is something wrong with JMEC,” Makuei told reporters in Juba on August 2. He says the JMEC must prove itself to be a joint body, otherwise the commission is “useless” and “will not serve the interest of South Sudan and will not help in the implementation of the agreement” (…) “Makuei says the government will proof to Akol that the peace agreement hasn’t collapsed. “He has been carried away by his ambitions, because Lam Akol has his own ambition of becoming the president of South Sudan. The same with Riek Machar and the two cannot go together,” says Makuei, adding that “the two only agree when they are not in power, but once they are in power, they disagree” (TheNiles.org, 03.08.2016).
This report also:
“The government of South Sudan has dismissed reports circulating on social media that Riek will capture Juba. Information Minister Michael Makuei said during the press conference yesterday evening that the news circulating on social media is untrue and media propaganda.
“There are a lot of wild rumors these days on the social media and our people are made to believe that the news is correct. Riek Machar is on the run, would you expect him to organize forces from nowhere and prepare to attack Juba from four directions – this is media propaganda,” he said” (…) “UNMISS did not come here to come and colonize us, but it came to serve the people of South Sudan. All the international NGOs that came to South Sudan did not come to South Sudan to conquer it,” he said. “The way these organizations are behaving is unbecoming. Some have abandoned their mandates and have started to do different jobs which are not within their mandates. Writing controversial reports and slipping them out without informing the government and those reports go and appear over there.” (The National Courier, 03.08.2016).
As this is happening with the sackings the decree and swearing-in of new loyalist of President Kiir has happen as the Government or newly created TGoNU are occurring. The President have made sure he has own men in as the former FVP Machar have gone to the bush. The SPLM-IO and others have been gotten rid of and in initially have this given more power directly to the SPLM and the President. As he has gotten a new FVP Gen. Taban Deng Gai former SPLM-IO who has been sacked from SPLM-IO, so he is no longer part of Dr. Riek Machar.
This has also been reported:
“Over one hundred United Nations workers were recently denied entry or deported at the Juba International Airport due to new regulations issued by the Directorate of Immigration, sources tell Radio Tamazuj” (…) “The new regulations “is a clear violation of the spirit and intent of the Status of Forces Agreement” Shantal Persaud, a spokesperson for the United Nations Mission in South Sudan told Radio Tamazuj over email. “These new rules apply only to UNMISS and UN agency personnel and not to all internationals” (…)”Persaud said that four UNMISS personnel were deported this weekend, and pointed out that the peace agreement states that “The Government undertakes to facilitate the entry into and departure from South Sudan, without delay or hindrance, of the Special Representative and members of UNMISS as well as from payment of any fees or charges on entering into or departing from South Sudan” (Radio Tamazuj, 02.08.2016).
So with the changes of TGoNU or TGNU shows the legitimate problems with the central government of Salva Kiir in South Sudan, as the responsible agreements between his SPLM and SPLM-IO; this continues with the violence between the political and armed groups as they doesn’t want the world and International Organizations to question their actions. As the reports from July alone are harassment and rapes of woman we’re in the numbers of 120, and some of them even inside the UN Internally Displaced Camps in Juba. Therefore the reactionary and disruption of laws are shown with the mentality of the rebels and army in the capital of South Sudan.
UN condemns the recent violence:
“This is my second visit to South Sudan since I assumed my role as Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator in June last year. Sadly, since I was here one year ago, the humanitarian situation has significantly deteriorated, including in areas that were relatively stable last time I visited. Displacement and hunger are now widespread across the country. During my visit, I had the opportunity to meet with His Excellency the President of the Republic of South Sudan, Mr. Salva Kiir Mayardit, and his most senior Government Officials to discuss the dire and worsening humanitarian crisis. I expressed my shock and dismay at the appalling reports of violations committed against civilians during fighting in recent months, including in Juba. In particular, I condemned the heinous acts of sexual violence carried out against women and girls, including by members of the armed forces” (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, 03.08.2016).
With these reports together with the recent actions is not actually given peace a chance. They are instead busier with getting the guns and ammunition against each other. The violence and battles are destroying the chance for mediation and dialogue as the newly reunited groups have gone away from each other and have distanced themselves even more. The drop of SPLM-IO in TGoNU together with banishing the UNMISS and UN Officials barring from entering the South Sudan, as the media are under siege proves that the Government doesn’t have the interest of being questioned for their activity as they are trying to silence the SPLM-IO after the recent battles inside Juba. They are now battling on the outside and other places. This has happen as the violence in Wau and other areas have erupted as well.
This has also been reported:
“ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AA) – Rebel leader Riek Machar’s office has strongly criticized the international community and guarantors of peace process for allegedly being passive to the political turmoil in the South Sudanese capital Juba. The guarantors include Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya and other African countries in the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) trade bloc. “There is a serious lack of support from the international community and the guarantors to the peace agreement,” Machar’s Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO) said in a statement Wednesday” (Alaturka E-Gazetesi, 03.08.2016).
“UN agencies said refugees had reported gunmen trying to block their flight and harassing them on the way” (…) “Armed groups operating across different parts of South Sudan are looting villages, murdering civilians and forcibly recruiting young men and boys into their ranks,” UNHCR spokeswoman Melissa Fleming told a briefing in Geneva” (WarsintheWorld.com, 03.08.2016).
All of these reports are not pleasant as the citizens and the people are the ones in the cross-fire and the development at a standstill as the SPLM and SPLM-IO is barred against each other. Together with the questionable TGoNU government with no SPLM-IO ministers as the Dr. Riek Machar as the nemesis of Gen. Salva Kiir who became the President Kiir.
The IGAD, the UNMISS might question together with the United Nations might intervene, but the peacekeepers and more blue helmets doesn’t stop the continuously infighting between SPLM and SPLM-IO; as long as the trust between the big-men doesn’t exists, because Kiir cannot trust a man who at one point allied themselves with Bashir in Khartoum instead of the South Sudanese. These issues will never differ and lay behind the actions of President Kiir. Therefore the agreement and cease-fire between them was flawed from the get-go as the trust isn’t built overnight. Also with the knowledge of the recent actions the mentality and ability for peace is weaken by fleeing from office from Machar after trying to assassinate Kiir in Juba, as he has explained to foreign media and the closeness of the killings.
What is the next moves and where this goes is not easy, as the two big-men play continues to cost lives, continues to escalate the violence and instability of the South Sudanese Republic. This is worrying and the reasons for it is the citizens who are used as pawns by the Juba-Government and rebels in the field who fights against the centralized forces, while the blue-helmets and international community watches the atrocities are occurring in and around Juba. While even reports of recruiting child-soldiers and the rapes are showing that the state cease to exists and the army with their militarized justice is deteriorating from lawfulness. The international community has to find another way to make sure the actors and the Executive can generate peace and destabilize the armies as they will continue to fight until the forces win. These being said as the peace between them only lasted a few months, while the civil war lasted for months upon months. Peace.