Category Archives: Sudan

South Sudan Rebels Recapture Malakal, Government Troops on the Run

From: Sudan News

Rebel forces loyal to the South Sudanese Former Vice President Dr. Riek Machar have recaptured Malakal in the early hours of Tuesday.

The rebels seized the capital of the oil-rich Upper Nile State early Tuesday after days of fierce fighting.

Rebels’ commander who spoke to the South Sudan News Agency on condition of anonymity said their troops have defeated combined forces of Uganda and South Sudan stationed in Malakal.

“They are running toward Paloch and our forces are pursuing them”, the source said.

Letter to the South Sudan’s Youth Organization

From: South Sudan Press

By Abraham Deng Lueth

A citizen Letter to the South Sudan’s Youth Organization for Social Development (YOFSD) and the SPLM Youth League (SYL): The South Sudanese Youth and their Roles in Mitigating the Current Conflict

Dear fellow citizens,

The current crisis

February 13, 2014 (SSNA) — No doubt that the current crisis is as a result of the SPLM power wrangling. It then slightly changed to ethnic targeting by both sides of the conflict. Therefore, the social capital of our nation has been heavily, terribly and uniquely broken and it continues to bleed helplessly.

Moreover, it is, undoubtedly, clear that both leaders, President Kiir and Dr. Riek, have a hand in the creation of the conflict. How can the Youth, the future generation of the country, choose a side in this conflict and expect to build a united, loving and prosperous nation in which justice reigns?

To The South Sudan’s Youth Organization for Social Development

It seems like Social Development is one of the key words in your organization’s name. As a result of this conflict, the social fabric of the country has been terribly disturbed and that should be of a major concern to you as an organization. How can it be re-amended? Is its rebuilding possible when you know the side you are taking has some serious contributions to the conflict? There is nothing wrong with side-taking but with a situation such as what happened within the SPLM where two leaders, Kiir and Riek, decided to turn violent, they must be disowned, condemned and urged to stop the violence immediately and return to the table to negotiate out their differences.

To The SPLM Youth League

The SPLM has been terribly troubled and its solidarity is uncertain. What can you do to maintain its coherence and rebuilding of its damaged image to set it up to win national approval over other political parties in the country again? The SPLM Youth League that is cheering up the government must know that they are not being nationalistic.

They are not being the country’s or people’s Youth but President Kiir’s Youth. This position is irresponsible. Given the nature of the conflict and how it started, this is not a good position for the SPLM Youth League if they want a good future for the SPLM and the nation. Are you encouraging the way the SPLM leadership has been handling the party leadership crisis that led to the current war in the country?

To all Youth in South Sudan and particularly, in Juba

Last time when the UN compound incident in Bor Town, involving the minister of information occurred, the Youth took to the streets and condemned the UNMISS representative; it was irresponsible. The Youth have held several events lately where they missed the opportunity to condemn both sides of the conflict and the atrocities that have surfaced as a result of the conflict; that is irresponsible. The Youth continue to miss the opportunity where they can present themselves as the real advocates for peace, unity and support measures that return the country back on the path to peace and development and this is again, irresponsible.

Any South Sudanese Youth entity needs to take a neutral or central position so that it can see all the irregularities on both sides of the conflict and condemn them. That is a position that will be good for the country.

The Youth should push the government to release the remaining 4 detainees (they have not participated in the coup if there was one, at all and their release will not only build confidence and trust in the peace process but they will have important contributions to make as well). Their case is no different from the other released seven. Playing politics to continue to keep them is not in the best interest of the nation we want to build.

The people who have rebelled against the state (whether enforced on them or not) are those who ran away and are currently leading the rebellion. The Youth can condemn these individuals and urge them to lay their guns down and join the talks to resolve their political differences. They, too, should be allowed to explain themselves and contribute to the peace process as soon as possible.

The Youth should call for unwavering support from the regional and international bodies to help South Sudan, not one side of the conflict, to get out of this mess. The Youth should urge all South Sudanese leaders (governors, commissioners, civil society leaders, church leaders, members of parliament, members of cabinet and more) to prioritize peace, “truth and reconciliation.” South Sudan belongs to us all.

Do not become the Unfortunate Youth

I call on all the South Sudanese youth to avoid becoming what I referred to as unfortunate youth. It is important that young people’s position in this conflict is based on the truth and principles that are of a nationalistic stand. Doing anything contrary to this stand is unfortunate. After the conflict, our nation will have a daunting task of “truth and reconciliation” that will be very challenging due to the extent at which this conflict has disturbed our social capital (trust).

The Seeds Youth

This is a group that our nation needs right now. This is a group of Youth that does not shy away from telling president Kiir that he has a hand in the conflict. Therefore, he needs to stop lobbying negative support (that causes him to think that he can continue to fight Dr. Riek to the finish). It should urge the President to focus on finding viable solutions (releasing the 4 detainees, reducing Ugandan soldiers to important installations and prioritizing peace) to the conflict. On the other hand, these Youth need to send Dr. Riek a clear message that says, NO to bullets and yes to negotiations. Dear fellow citizens, if we have done what I have just narrated on day one and continue to do it today, we would have peace by now. Cheering up either side pushes more for war.

Please, let me end by quoting these nice statements by one South Sudanese Youth.

“You fanatics of backroom designed constitution for the dictator and authoritarian state, I and many like-minded individuals will tell the other side you don’t want the world to know. You believed the white lie that there was a coup; we will keep saying there was no coup at all. Our misguided president made it up to purge his political opponents.

Your state’s ministers go around stonewalling the international community to know the whole truth about the foreign Ugandan’s troop’s presence in SS, we will say yes, they are here fighting and killing our own people we brotherly disagreed with politically.

You preach ethnic hatreds and play our majority ethnic card as a winning political strategy to say Riek and his loyalists are pure evil and a source of our problem, ought to be physically eliminated, we say no. They are not! Nuer and supporters are simply people just like us who want to seek their political interest. If you sit down with them and discuss politics civilly without attacking them first, they will not fight back.

In our severely divided society and violent prone, it is only our innocent peasants living across our villages who come to pay heavy prices in human and material costs. Our political power elites’ families don’t suffer. They don’t feel any pain. Their immediate families live abroad in millions dollar mansions. All our leaders in SS on both sides are human vultures. They live off trading and selling human bloods for their material selves-needs.

They are all doing it. But then, the smart ones holding power don’t want to share any part of the blames. They believe they’re living political saints. Their exceptional holiness attitude is beyond belief. They only want the praises, not the blame for their own mistakes. Social conformity is a rule of the game.

Well, until they somehow fairly get it right, we won’t stop thinking they are also hypocrites! Call me a rebel, disloyal, traitor, and what have you. I’m perfectly fine with it. It is time to tell the truth as we know it. If it will cost us such labels, then so be it!”

You may not agree with most of it but it is actually a test of nationalism. If you find most of it true, then you are a nationalistic youth, especially, when you are a Dinka. If you find most of it negative, then you must check your stand because I am afraid, you are irresponsibly siding and you are not helping this conflict. Do not be unfortunate youth who is just thrown around as needed. This piece challenges those who cheer up the government without recognizing its irregularities.

Remember, Dr. Riek must be urged to put down his guns and so is the government to stop pursuing the rebels. Both must respect the cessation of hostilities they have signed and work on the peaceful resolutions to the conflict. So, my fellow citizens, revisit your activities and align them with the future you want to see for our nation. The politics of victimizing opponents and barring them from political opportunities is a clear sign of tyranny that we should not entertain.

Abraham Deng Lueth is a Community Support Specialist at Truman Behavioral health Emergency Department in Kansas City, Missouri, United States; he is the President of Greater Bor Community-USA. He previously worked as a critical care laboratory technician and conducted an independent undergraduate biomedical research project which was published in the Plant Science Journal in 2007.

Ethiopia Wants Ugandan Troops out of South Sudan, Warns of a Regional Conflict

From: South Sudan Press

Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn has on Monday said that foreign troops participating in South Sudan’s conflict must withdraw from South Sudan.

Desalegn’s comment is the first direct hit from a regional player against Uganda’s military intervention and comes in time when South Sudanese opposing factions trade accusations over violation of the “cessation of hostilities” signed on the 23rd of January 2014 in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

“Because of this intervention, the conflict might end up as a regional conflict because there are other interests also from other sides”, Desalegn told reporters in Addis Ababa.

Desalegn says Ethiopia wants to see all foreign forces out of South Sudan and reiterates Ethiopia’s commitment to find peaceful solution to the conflict.

“I hope for the cessation of hostilities…, Ugandan forces and all other external forces must withdraw from that area phase by phase,” he added.

The ceasefire that was signed in Ethiopia calls for the withdrawal of Uganda’s soldiers and the release of all political detainees.

But, Uganda refuses to withdraw its troops, asserting that Uganda has interests in South Sudan and that Kiir asks Museveni for military help.

Regional observers have on many occasions warned that Ugandan military involvement could intensify the conflict.

Ethiopia is the host of the IGAD-led peace talks and plays an important role in bringing the two sides on a negotiating table.

The Two Sudans: Problems are linked – so are solutions

From: South Sudan Press

By David L. Phillips and Ahmed Hussain Adam

February 5, 2014 – Sudan and South Sudan are a revolving door of deadly conflicts. Comprehensive and sustainable peace can only be achieved through parallel steps affecting conditions in both countries. Managing crisis in one while neglecting the other is a stop-gap. If problems are linked, so are solutions.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), with help from the United States, mediated the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005. The CPA ended the civil war between the North and South, which lasted 22 years and killed more than 2.5 million people while displacing more than 5 million. It guaranteed the people of South Sudan a right to self-determination, including an option to remain a part of Sudan, and a timetable for conducting a referendum on South Sudan’s status.

Humiliated by the loss of South Sudan’s oil-rich territories, Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir attacked Darfur in 2003. What started as a distraction from Sudan’s other problems turned into a brutal genocide, killing more than 300,000 people and displacing over 3 million.

The international community reacted to events in Darfur. The United Nations and African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) was established in 2007 as the world body’s largest peacekeeping operation in history. The World Food Program and other aid agencies undertook a massive relief operation. The International Criminal Court (ICC) indicted Bashir for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Americans mobilized to save Darfur through grass-roots activities, raising awareness and demanding action by the U.S. Government.

The international community pivoted its focus back to South Sudan when 99% of its people voted for independence in January 2011. Diplomatic and financial resources were redirected to the huge task of stabilizing South Sudan, the world’s newest nation.

Bashir responded by intensifying Sudan’s military campaign in Darfur, indiscriminately targeting marginalized groups in South Kordofan, Blue Nile, and the Nuba Mountains. All the while, Bashir was taking steps to undermine South Sudan’s sovereignty. Bashir believed he could control a weakened South Sudan and, by dividing its leadership, gain commercial advantage.

What started as a power struggle between South Sudan’s ruling elite erupted into a full-blown ethnic war on December 15, 2013. The conflict, which caused enormous human suffering to the entire population, pitted the Dinka of President Salva Kiir against the Nuer of former Vice President Reik Machar. The international community responded urgently to the crisis. U.S. Special Envoy Ambassador Donald Booth played a critical role negotiating a cessation of hostilities.

With international attention focused on the latest crisis in South Sudan, Bashir predictably intensified operations against Darfur. Like 2009, when Bashir threw out 13 international aid agencies, Bashir ordered the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to suspend operations and leave Darfur. He will make sure there is no witness to his latest crimes.

Bashir is also massacring the people of South Kordofan and Blue Nile. Piqued by an alliance of armed movements who fought last summer to defend marginalized groups across the country, his latest offensive is an effort to punish innocent civilians. Manyinnocent civilians in Sudan have recently lost their lives or have been driven from their homes in Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile. Millions of non-combatants are in urgent need of food, shelter and medicine.

After decades of violent conflict, effective international engagement must focus on multi-track and parallel efforts to achieve comprehensive peace and democratic transformation in Sudan and South Sudan.

South Sudan cannot be allowed to fail. Billions have been spent developing its infrastructure and governance. South Sudan’s implosion would have staggering regional implications.

At the same time, the world must take steps to end Darfur’s tragedy and prevent the killing of other Sudanese. Genocide is still unfolding under UNAMID’s nose. UNAMID is more engaged in force protection and meddling in flawed peacemaking activities than protecting civilians. Its monitoring and reporting capabilities are extremely limited. Darfur is like a black box; UNAMID cannot control conditions on-the-ground, and there is no real-time reporting on events.

The UN Security Council needs to bolster UNAMID. To this end, UNAMID needs credible leadership and a broader protection mandate to safeguard civilians. It also needs better trained and equipped peacekeepers. An enhanced early warning, monitoring, and reporting system would help identify crises before deadly violence spirals out of control.

Bashir’s appointment of General Mustafa al-Dabi, as his representative to IGAD, sends a worrisome signal. General al-Dabi is known for crimes against the people of Darfur, as well as divide-and-rule tactics when he served as deputy chief of staff for military operations of the Sudan’s Armed Forces (1996-1999), and as Bashir’s representative in Darfur (1999-2004). He also performed dismally acting as the Arab League’s chief human rights observer in Syria in 2011.

The five-year anniversary of Bashir’s indictment by the ICC is March 4, 2014. Bashir must not be allowed to murder with impunity. Member states must demand accountability, and political transition. Bashir is maneuvering to buy time and stay in power, while dragging the country into another rigged election in 2015, as he did in April 2010.

Sudan and South Sudan have reached a fork in the road. Down one path lies reform, peace and progress. Down the other lies more deadly conflict and state disintegration. After so many years of war, the peoples of Sudan and South Sudan deserve peace, justice and democracy.

David L. Phillips is Director of the Program on Peace-building and Rights at Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights (ISHR) and Ahmed Hussain Adam is a Visiting Scholar at ISHR. They co-chair the Two Sudans Project.

U.S. Calls for Release of South Sudan’s Political Detainees

from: South Sudan Press

The United States has on Thursday called on South Sudan’s government to free the remaining four political prisoners who are still being held.

Earlier this week, the South Sudanese government released seven detainees and handed them over to the Kenyan government.

The U.S. says it welcomes the release of the seven prisoners and calls it a “positive step”.

“We welcome the release of the seven detainees and we believe that is a positive step … We will continue to urge the release of the remaining four detainees,” U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns told Reuters.

Meanwhile, South Sudan’s Foreign Minister Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin said the remaining four detainees are still under investigation and that final results of their cases will be given to president Kiir for his final decision.

“As soon as it (the investigation) is over, the report again will go to the president and he has the option also of using his constitutional authority to grant a pardon or whatever”, Marial told Reuters.

The four remaining detainees are: Former deputy defense Minister Majak D’Agoot, Former SPLM Secretary General Pagan Amum, former head of South Sudan’s office to the United States, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, and ex-national security minister Oyai Deng Ajak.

South Sudanese in Australia to Hold Demonstration Against Uganda’s Military Role

From: Sudan Press

South Sudanese in Australia planned to hold a peaceful demonstration against Uganda’s military involvement in South Sudan’s crisis. The protest is coordinated by two of the largest South Sudanese organizations in Australia, the South Sudanese Community in Australia (SSCA) and South Sudan Advocacy Group (SSAG).

The two agencies believe that Kampala has contributed to the suffering of innocent South Sudanese.

In a memo seen by the South Sudan News Agency, the two organizations express their anger against Uganda’s military participation and called upon the Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to immediately remove his troops from South Sudan.

Uganda is currently fighting alongside South Sudanese government forces.

“South Sudan Advocacy Group in conjunction with South Sudanese Community in Australia are coordinating a peaceful demonstration to denounce Ugandan troops roles in current South Sudan’s crisis”, the memo reads in parts.

“We think…[the world] would like to know this event and learn more about the facts and the root cause(s) of current conflict in South Sudan”, the statement explained.

The groups further said that the crisis that exploded on the 15th of December 2013 has caused immense human suffering and hundreds of thousands of civilians have been uprooted from their homes.

The demonstration will be held on January 29, 2014; from 12:20pm- 1:30pm; location of the event is 165-169 Thomas Street, Dandenong VIC3175, City of Greater Dandenong, Victoria, Australia.

The protest is expected to be attended by the people who were in Juba when the crisis started, the SSNA has learned.

The coordinated demonstration is also expected to highlight the root causes of the conflict and denunciation of Kampala’s military intervention.

At least, 400,000 people have been displaced and more than 78, 000 fled to neighboring countries, according to the recent United Nations (UN) estimate.


From: Sudan Press

The South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy (SSHURSA) has announced the closure of all its offices in South Sudan and suspended operations until further notice.

In a press statement released to the media, the rights group cites government threats as the main reason behind its decision to close its offices and suspend functions.

“We decided to close down all our activities in South Sudan and suspend our operations on critical scenarios. First, I started receiving death threats and threats of arrests through phone calls and text messages from unknown persons and others who identified themselves with names I could not believe are genuine and I narrowly left South Sudan on 23 December 2013 for Uganda” Said Biel Boutros Biel, the Executive Director of SSHURSA now in exile.

Biel had received threatening text messages and phone calls before and he believes come from government agents.

“Surprisingly while in Kampala, I still continued to receive death threats thus I left Uganda and so once those threatening me failed to locate me, they started asking some members of civil society of my whereabouts. They realized that I was out of the country” Biel continued to explain.

“Secondly, when they couldn’t find me, they resorted to framing false accusations to some of my colleagues. Now they have stormed my house and looted everything including our car. So we realized that South Sudan is no longer a place we could work in, under the circumstances for it is not a secret that those giving us threats have evil intention to harm us as they did to our colleague Isaiah Abraham. We could not longer ignore them and we decided to go to exile” Biel added.

Human rights defenders, journalists, and government’s critics have been living in fear in South Sudan because the government sees them as threat to its existence.

The group also calls on the United Nations (UN) and African Human rights Commissions to conduct to impartial investigations on the ongoing killings of civilians in Juba and other parts of the country. The agency wants the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to refer ethnic killings to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

“The murder of the civilians and non-combatants in Juba or elsewhere in ongoing conflict in South Sudan fits before the ICC because it constitutes international Crimes, a clear violation of International humanitarian Law under Geneva Convention as domesticated in 2012 by South Sudan and also a contravention of the ICC Act”, SSHURSA conclusively observes.

South Sudan Army (SPLA) and government’s agents have been widely accuse of unlawful killings, disappearances, torture, illegal detainment, beatings, intimidation, and many other human rights violations.

Bellow is the full text of SSHURSA’s statement:


SSHURSA Press Release: For immediate release, January 22, 2014
The South Sudan Human Rights Society For Advocacy (SSHURSA) decided to close down all its offices and suspends operations in South Sudan until further notice. This came as a result of threats hence most of the staff members have fled to exile for their lives. SSHURSA strongly believes that such threats are from the security circles of the government of South Sudan.

“We decided to close down all our activities in South Sudan and suspend our operations on critical scenarios. First, I started receiving death threats and threats of arrests through phone calls and text messages from unknown persons and others who identified themselves with names I could not believe are genuine and I narrowly left South Sudan on 23 December 2013 for Uganda” Said Biel Boutros Biel, the Executive Director of SSHURSA now in exile.

“Surprisingly while in Kampala, I still continued to receive death threats thus I left Uganda and so once those threatening me failed to locate me, they started asking some members of civil society of my whereabouts. They realized that I was out of the country” Biel continued to explain. “Secondly, when they couldn’t find me, they resorted to framing false accusations to some of my colleagues. Now they have stormed my house and looted everything including our car. So we realized that South Sudan is no longer a place we could work in, under the circumstances for it is not a secret that those giving us threats have evil intention to harm us as they did to our colleague Isaiah Abraham. We could not longer ignore them and we decided to go to exile” Biel added.

Though SSHURSA staff shall be absent within South Sudan, however, its leadership from afar, will continue monitoring the violations of human rights in South Sudan and will continue to expose the human rights violations the country is undergoing.

Calls for Action: SSHURSA calls on UN and African Commission on Human and People’s Rights to conduct impartial investigations on the ongoing killings of civilians in Juba and other parts of the country. It also calls on UN Security Council to refer South Sudan’s killings on ethnic ground as genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity to the International Criminal Court (ICC). “The murder of the civilians and non-combatants in Juba or elsewhere in ongoing conflict in South Sudan fits before the ICC because it constitutes international Crimes, a clear violation of International humanitarian Law under Geneva Convention as domesticated in 2012 by South Sudan and also a contravention of the ICC Act”. SSHURSA conclusively observes.

For more information about SSHURSA or this press release, contact us on: E-mail:

ABOUT SSHURSA:South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy (SSHURSA) is an incorporated non political and non profit making Human Rights organization founded in June 2007 by South Sudanese Lawyers and Law Students at Makerere Law Development Centre (LDC), Kampala-Uganda. In 2009, it became operational in South Sudan with its head office in capital city Juba and co-ordination offices in the states. It membership composes of individuals and organizations who believe in its human rights protection mandate. Itsvision is for a democratic and human rights abiding South Sudan and with its mission to monitor, document and publish human rights status in South Sudan and also train general public on Constitution, the importance of human rights, fundamental freedoms of an individual, Rule of Law, democracy, Transitional Justice and International Humanitarian Law , all geared towards creating a more responsible, justice and good governance oriented South Sudan. SSHURSA pays special focus on the rights of children, women and other vulnerable groups.It also keeps close attention to the strict observance of the supreme law, The Constitution.


For more information, contact us on:

E-mail: /
Tel: +211955300382/+211921114362;
Juba, Republic of South Sudan

Sudan: Blunders at Bor’s UNMISS Compound

From: Sudan Press

Enter but with no guns and uniformed men, Minister Makuei was told. Now, this is being twisted by President Kiir and company!

I always believed that President Kiir is being misled by people around him. ‘He’s a nice uncle surrounded by bad people’ as my brother would philosophically say. However, one has to sit back and think hard. Is President Kiir this clueless as to be completely blind to the realities of what is good and bad?

The government should avoid controversies and focus on helping civilians in Bor, Juba, Malakal, Bentiu and other areas. The senseless massacres and utter destruction we’ve seen in Bor and other areas should be our main concern as national healing will be next to impossible given the massacres, destructions and Minister Makuei’s and president Kiir’s attitudes. Riek failed as a leader and you are now failing civilians through mindless arrogance!

Stop making excuses for your own failures! The current mess was created by lack of conscientious leadership by President Kiir and exacerbated by callous thirst for power by Riek Machar and his forces.

Four UN soldiers were killed by SPLA forces when helicopter was shot down in December of 2012. And two more UN peacekeeping forces were killed by Riek’s Rebels in Akobo in December of 2013 but the UN is still helping our people. Please blame the culprits and stop making excuses!

Riek Machar is a man who’s distinguished himself as power-hungry even before he joined SPLA in the early 80s. The man has a dumbfounding mythic belief that can even have my daughter say: “Hey grandpa…don’t you think that’s a little naïve?”

With no doubt, Riek Machar inhabits his own world and he’s a man who’s predictable. This makes it extremely dangerous for Kiir and his trusted elements to use Riek as a pillar through which Kiir’s goodness meter can be calibrated.

Riek has lost what he has to lose but Kiir is still the president of South Sudan. He has to act like one; not like a rebel on rampage; and certainly not like a child who doesn’t care about the consequences of what he says. How can our president talk like some man on the street? Why would the president talk anyhow? As Jiëëng people from my home area would say, muuk yi yic (have self-control)

While Kiir is a leader of a sovereign nation, he needs to understand that we need allies, formidable allies…and trading partners. China alone wouldn’t do!

“I think the UN want to be the government of the South [Sudan] and they felt short of naming the chief of the UNMISS as the co-president of the Republic of South Sudan.” This is pathetic coming from our president.

President Kiir should be the one who should clearly understand the role of UN in South Sudan. Ministers don’t just enter UN premises just because they are ministers! They have to follow UN protocols just as South Sudanese government has protocols.

Is Kiir being destroyed by his allies or is President Kiir completely a lost man in a role he has no clue how to perform?

Someone needs to rescue president Kiir’s legacy; whatever is left, that is.

Michael Makuei Lueth, the current minister of information, is a man who plays by no rules. With no shame, the man swims majestically in ridiculousness. He says whatever comes to his mind.

I don’t even know why Makuei wasn’t arrested with the 11 political prisoners when he was present in the December 6 press conference. We know that conference is the center of the ‘coup attempt’ claim.

Why doesn’t Makuei, a lawyer by profession, know that entry to the UN premises is governed by rules and regulations that need to be respected? Being a minister doesn’t entitle one to forceful entry to UN premises.

Minister Makuei wasn’t prevented from entering per se as claimed by President Kiir and his officials. The gentleman at the gate told the minister he could enter with no uniformed and armed officers (the video is here as proof). Lueth was allowed entry if with civilian entourage. Assuming that he’s a minister, he wanted to be allowed to do whatever he wanted; that is, enter with SPLA generals.

Sorry, some people play by rules even if we, as South Sudanese, don’t!

President Kiir needs to know who’s destroying or has destroyed his legacy! We are a young nation and we can’t afford isolation.

In all indications, President Kiir and his officials are sticking to the ‘coup attempt’ claim when the whole world hasn’t seen enough evidence to declare it ‘a coup attempt.’ The world isn’t saying there was absolutely no ‘coup attempt.’ What’s being claimed is that there’s no enough evidence to conclude that it was a ‘coup attempt’.

Respect is only in proving what one claims not in just professing that such and such a thing is true.

I need the president to take the following issues very seriously:

– Control the follow of information as ministers contradict themselves and reflect the president in a grim light. Makuei Lueth says one thing and Ateny wekdit says something else.
– Let your officials research and double check facts from different sources before going to the media. The ministers say ridiculous things in the media and our country looks like a nation of idiotic men and women when that’s absolutely wrong.
– Let your officials know that the government is supposed to come up with solutions for the country’s problems instead of whining all the times.
– Remember that respect and integrity rest solely on what can be proved. Professing things emotively because they appeal to the majority without proofs is a folly not worthy of presidency.
– The world has helped us gain our independence; don’t spit on their faces with made-up claims like those of Makuei Lueth.
– Makuei Lueth’s actions at the United Nations’ compound were shameful. Makuei wasn’t refused entry for argument’s sake. He was allowed to enter as long as he entered with unarmed people not in uniform. People like Makuei Lueth will bury you, Mr. President.

Mr. President, double-check everything you are told because your officials tell you things they don’t research. You might be a president of a sovereign nation; however, sovereignty comes with responsibility and mutual respect.

Your legacy will be written tomorrow. Don’t let it be spoiled by people you trust.

Kuir ë Garang is an author of seven books including “South Sudan Ideologically” and “Is ‘Black’ Really Beautiful?” For contacts see Twitter: @kuirthiy or his blog,

south Sudan: Enough is enough on international community

From: Sudan Press

By Kuach Y. Tutkuay

“A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.”–John Maxwell

January 15, 2014 (SSNA) — It is with a due concerns for the humanitarian situation in south Sudan that I call on international community to intervene immediately to put to an end the everlasting suffering our leaders have subjected us to because of their own personal love for power. It would have been better if the SPLA have had a thorough training that they would be the nation’s professional army with no respect to their individual’s tribes. They were the very people who would have put short this chaos between the political leaders by not taking any side but remains one army that protect civilians.

Because the government has failed completely to develop a professional army, it has turned to be very catastrophic that the civilians they were supposed to protect are finishing in their own hands. The incident in Juba and Malakal had targeted thousands of Nuer women and children that had nothing to do with the power struggle. Same thing forced some SPLA nuer Generals to rebels and kill some civilians Dinka in Bor and Bentiu which had nothing to with the genocide in Juba. The two groups that suffered genocide are the very citizen whom the government is claiming to be protecting yet they turned to kill them in a cold blood murdering.

In any country, a legitimate government is that which does not segregates its citizens on tribal or religious bases. The Arab did this but in a better way, they never massacred a certain tribe in whole including the women and children, they never massacred people in masses like what happened in Juba. I thought all citizens voted for Kiir equally, I never knew there are some votes he would wished to be casted away rather. In the night of 16th December when the president declare a 12-hours curfew from 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM, many people including women and children lose their lives because it was the very night I would wish to curse for good, the night that a door-to-door killing of innocent civilians by Kiir’s force took place. Between the two groups, there is no legitimate government because all failed to protect civilians and as such, I would say that they should not be described as government and rebels, but instead would be described as “Kiir’s militia” and “Riak’s militia” respectively.

The territorial integrity the government is supposed to protect has been abused, many troops are coming in from the south and the north. Uganda sent in thousands of troop to support his bosom friend in what the world described as a tribal war. The Sudanese rebels–Justice and Equality Movement–JEM sent in thousands of troop from the northern part of the country. The national resources that was used to hire these troops would construct thousands metres road crossing the country from north to south. Since 2005, this government never had any success. It’s always the words of desperation that describes the whole south Sudanese system of government–corruption, nepotism, austerities, unemployment, insecurity, poor infrastructures, power struggle and finally the full blown stage of ‘genocide.’

It is obvious that there are some grievances among the south Sudanese tribes as a result of the struggle story, especially the two rival tribes of Nuer and Dinka. I remember in 2010 when I was in Fangak County, an SPLA soldier gave me an hefty blow just because I was greeted by one of my pupils addressing me as “uztaz” (teacher). “You will suffer, don’t forget the killing of our people by William Chuol Deng”he said. Chuol Deng was one of the SPLA generals who hails from Fangak County, but died long ago before I was born. I don’t have any connection with what he did during his operation as an SPLA commander. This gave me an idea that there is a need for national healing and reconciliation to end all these grudges against any tribe.

The national healing and Reconciliation commission was not formed until 2012 despite the fact that it would have been done first thing as soon as we were granted internal self-government in 2005. South Sudanese always pronounces the slogan of “justice, liberty and prosperity” but in reality they end up doing the opposite, they interfered with the commission and made it redundant in the hand of Bishop Daniel without any achievement. This indicated that the government is not willing and able to achieve reconciliation and national peace.

The government has failed completely to provide anything beneficial to its citizens, the only thing they could do perfectly is the killing of unarmed civilians because it is easy. The international community keep saying “legitimate government” forgetting that we the citizens made it legitimate and only we can make it illegitimate too. To end this massive killing, the international community especially the US must intervene and protect civilians in the hands of these brutal factions. The US need to repeat what they did for Iraq in south Sudan to save the remaining population from brutal killing. If only the international community will sit with their hands folded and watch, we the victims will not appreciate their neutrality because we are being finished day by day. I call up on those who have respect for human life and value it to come immediately to our aid. Save our remains oh friends of goodwill, enough is enough. More than ten thousand people killed in one month, it is disastrous!

I have lost several cousins from Nuer and several friends from Dinka, I don’t want to keep losing the people I love each day. May all their souls rest in eternal peace.

The author is south Sudanese from Nuer currently working with the United Nations in South Sudan, he was nearly a victim of Kiir’s massacre but was evacuated from Juba by UN on the ground that his tribe is being targeted and his security at risk. The views are not representing that of the UN but my personal views as a citizen of this country. You can reach me on

Aid from Japan to South Sudan

From: Sudan Press
Subject: Japanese Prime Minister Abe announced approximately $25 million assistance in response to deteriorating situation in South Sudan

Embassy of Japan in South Sudan
14 January 2014
January 14, 2014 (SSNA) — On 14 January, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, in his speech made during his visit to Ethiopia following Cote d’Ivoire and Mozambique, announced that Japan is preparing to implement immediate assistance amounting to approximately $25 million to respond to the deteriorating situation in South Sudan. Among the assistance, about $20 million is planned to be utilised in response to the urgent appeal made by the United Nations on 31 December 2013 (Response Plan). The assistance is expected to cover the most pressing humanitarian needs stipulated in the Plan, such as food and nutrition, health, water and sanitation, protection, logistics and refugees.

Ambassador of Japan to South Sudan Takeshi Akamatsu said, “Japan has been gravely concerned over the dire humanitarian situation throughout South Sudan. We in this connection commend the dedicated work of the United Nations and the wider humanitarian community. Our assistance, expressed by Prime Minister Abe and responding to United Nations’ urgent call, should contribute to improving the difficult situation that many South Sudanese civilians have been facing”.

As stated by Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in his statement on 24 December, Japan reiterates its strong appeal to all parties concerned to end the violence and resolve the issue through dialogue. Japan supports the efforts made by relevant countries and institutions, particularly the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), towards a peaceful resolution of the situation and calls on the parties of South Sudan to sincerely respond to the efforts.


About Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Africa, please refer to: (including the full text of his speech “Japan’s Diplomacy towards Africa: Strengthening Each Individual, One by One”)
For more information, please contact:

Hisako Ishizaki, First Secretary, Economic Cooperation Section, Embassy of Japan in South Sudan, , or Shojiro Nishimura, First Secretary, Political/Economic Sections, Embassy of Japan in South Sudan, mobile: +211-(0)956481145, e-mail:

Justice must be served to save South Sudan

From: Sudan Press

The Western media are rightly reporting the tragedy of renewed war in South Sudan. I was born into the civil war which started in 1955 and I do not wish to return to those dark days.

But I am concerned that the media are talking about the importance of starting negotiations between the two sides, anticipating the need for concessions by the Government in order to settle the conflagration. I have seen little evidence in the media of an understanding of the background to the fighting. I suggest that the facts of the conflict are such that no other democratic Government would lightly make concessions to the rebels if similar circumstances arose in their country.

The case for this uprising was made by former vice president Riek Machar and his followers in a press conference on Friday 6 December 2013 in Juba. Essentially, he argued that the country had been badly run even though the disagreement was within the Party. Curiously, he had been vice president of the country from 2005 to 2013. Why, one could reasonably ask, had he not used his powerful position for eight years to put right the wrongs he now sees in the Government? The fact is Riek and his allies were reacting to their sacking and investigation of their corrupt practices while in the government. It must be said that they are one of the richest politicians in the country.

Indeed, he and some of his followers are members of the parliament, and he is first vice chairman of the SPLM, the ruling party. Surely, this provides a peaceful route for scrutinising the Government and promoting change? South Sudan is a democracy; and he could create a new party, if he wished, to reflect his ideals, and to present it to the country during the next national elections.

In their case against the Government, Riek Machar, Pagan Amum, Rebecca Nyandeng and Deng Alor invoke the memory of Dr John Garang, late leader of the liberation movement. They claimed that the SPLM party, and SPLA military have now wrongly moved away from the origins, the latter becoming Salva’s Republican Guards without mentioning Riek Machar’s hidden militia within the SPLA led by Generals John Koung and Peter Gadet who took over the towns of Bor and Bentiu respectively and killing innocent people, by Dr Riek’s orders. Rebecca Nyandeng claims to be the mother of the nation. If she is indeed the mother of the nation, she should be the mother of all people of South Sudan. She should respect the memory and gratitude that South Sudanese people have for her husband, our late leader, Dr John Garang. So rather than dividing her children let her unite them.

It is good that Pagan Amum, Rebecca Nyandeng and Deng Alor look back to the good days of the SPLM/SPLA; but sadly not remembering the wrong they were a part of, the great division in the movement that made it turn guns against each other resulting in the death of fine generals and politicians. It is regrettable to say that history can repeat itself, but to be repeated by the same actors is beyond understanding. It is odd that Riek is now so much in love with John Garang after his death when Riek himself rebelled against Garang and split the SPLM and SPLA in 1991. In so doing, he massacred John Garang’s own people, i.e. over 5000 people in that year in Bor – the very town in which he has just provoked again another massacre of innocent.

No one would claim that all has run smoothly for the Government of South Sudan. In 2013, on the second anniversary of independence, President Salva Kiir spoke publicly of the issues that were rightly the cause of grievances, including corruption in high places. He introduced a major anti-corruption initiative. Having identified 75 high profile Government officials as having embezzled public money, he sacked the entire Government and appointed a new one. Another scandal then arose of some officials – some of them Riek Machar’s followers like Mr Deng Alor – transferring nearly $8 million to an East African bank. Salva took action by sacking those Ministers who were implicated in that scandalous transfer. It looks like this money was part of their plan to bribe people in order to overthrow the elected Government.

Anti-corruption measures also revealed that many ghost staff was on the Government’s books, and so screening of all staff in the army, police, prison service and Government Ministries was introduced to avoid misappropriation of funds. As vice president Riek Machar and his group could themselves have led such an initiative. They did not. Sadly it is clear why. They have not been loyal to the President. In their various Ministries they had not been doing their jobs, but spent the eight years trying to wrong foot and undermine the President in order to replace him.

The story of his life shows that Riek is used to getting to power by intimidating his superiors and by inciting the army and tribalism. In 1991, he had led the so-called “white army”, innocent young men from the Nuer tribe, who are simple cattle herders, to massacre people in Bor. He has repeated this now. He is a man who is used to getting his own way through the barrel of a gun. When he was sidelined by the President in 2013 for disloyalty to the country, he chose not to use the democratic approaches available to him but has reverted to the approach he knows best. So he mounted a coup against the elected President. He has been actively recruiting his tribesmen and inciting hatred and tribalism within the army and among the people. The events that took place last month in Juba and which spread to Unity, Jonglei and Upper Nile states have taken many lives needlessly.

But this conflict is of political nature, it is not tribal as mainly portrayed in the media. The majority of Nuer, Riek’s tribe, can see through this and continue to support the Government. What of his opponent, President Salva Kiir? He was John Garang’s second in command throughout the struggle for independence though overshadowed by him and those who claim to be the rightful heirs today. By contrast with Riek and his new sons, Salva was loyal to Garang and faithful to the struggle as he once said to those who claim to be Garang sons ‘If you are Garang’s sons, then I’m his older son.’ He fairly won a democratic election to the Presidency and has led the colossal task of creating a modern country from scratch.

He has stated that there is no way we can go back to war, whether within the South or with another nation. He has clearly indicated to the people that we should instead wage a war for reconstruction and development within the country. Those who know President Kiir agree that he is calm, thoughtful and forgiving which Riek and his followers mistakenly see as a weakness. His anti-corruption campaign which started with those who are corrupt in the government is an indication of the priority he gives to the future of his country over personal advantage. The aborted coup of 15th December 2013 by Dr. Riek and his allies was an attempt to divert public attention. Why should the Government make concessions to Riek Machar and his followers? In my view, they should be held accountable in the court of law for the death of many of our innocent people. Otherwise, the families of those brave men and women of the SPLA who died in the line of duty will not forgive us. Furthermore, the families of those who have been misled by Riek to die will not see justice. Justice must come firsthand, and then followed by a long-term dialogue and reconciliation as an important component of a true process of nation-building. Those who call for release of those who led the conspiracy against the elected president are simply wrong. They should be released only when proven innocent. Justice must be allowed to follow its course according to our laws. We are a free country, and we should remain free.

Ambassador Joseph Ayok Anei is the present director for Research, Planning and Translation at the South Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. He can be reached via

Call for Justice: President Kiir and VP Wani Must be Held Accountable for Nuer Genocide in Juba 2013

From: Sudan Press

Since the horrific killing of the civilians in Juba on 15th December 2013, I have been hearing people crying for justice hoping that the government of South Sudan will talk about the Nuer Massacre in Juba and held those who involve accountable for the crime they committed against the humanity. Surprisingly, the government has consistently been accusing the opposition about unjustifiable attempted coup against the government, instead to dealing with the crisis responsibly. The infiltration of fighting!

I am here to inform the world that genocide was committed by the presidential guards (mainly Dinka) with the order of the president to kill innocent Nuer. The UN and other organisations reported that over 1,000 were killed. Unfortunately our government took a partial position by refusing to publish a correct number of people killed in Juba or attempted to stop the killing of innocent people. I am one of the survivals of the Nuer mass killing that happened in Juba and I witnessed the situation. Below are the numbers of people killed in Juba and those who are affected by the conflict in Juba from 15th- 30th December 2013.

1000 University graduate who went to Juba to look for work were killed simply because they are Nuer.

1000 SPLA soldiers and policemen were killed while on duty to serve lives from 15th – 23rd December 2013 in Juba.

2300 civilians including civil servants and youth were killed

1000 children under 10 year old were killed a long side their parents

More than 3000 people still missing

More than 2000 Nuer people wounded and denied access to medical services by the SS government.

More than 18,000 Nuer escaped to UNMISS compounds for protection.

Therefore the total number of people killed was 5,300. Perhaps these figureswill help the relevant institution of the government and human right organisations bases in Juba to initiate a rigorous investigation about the Nuer massacre. The dead bodies were put in the big containers and bury them in mass grave outside and inside Juba by the Loyal Forces of the president. They also placed some dead bodies in the containers and throw them in the river. Unfortunately, the media was prevented to report on killing of innocent Nuer or to know what the killers were doing with the dead bodies, relatives were denied to bury the bodies of their love ones. I strongly advice the international community to consider what occurred in Juba serious, investigate the cause of it and held those who involve accountable. I will help with the investigation of the scent should I be alive.

The government has been conveying a misleading messages to the community alleged that the conflict was not a tribal conflict while the loyal forces were specifically targeted and killed Nuer in Juba because that was what they were instructed or oriented to do by the President Kiir. Neither Dinka, Cholo nor Equatorian was killed in Juba and those who killed Nuer in Juba were all Dinka, the so call the presidential guards.

For that reason, I believe that this is a tribal conflict. If the president intended to target the communities’ member of those who opposed the SPLAM direction, then, the loyal forces perhaps would have killed other nationality of South Sudan. This would have both the legitimacy of the government’s claim that this is not a tribal conflict.

The so call government spoke person, Makuei Lueth failed to define coup as the government claimed. He has been distorting the cause of the conflict and condemned ‘white army’ for what happened in Jonglie. If in fact, the government was to deal with this crisis responsibly, perhaps what happen in Jonglie could have been avoided. But what the so call “loyal forces” did in Juba after the president announced the curfew was intend killing and elimination of Nuer. No one talk about it event now from the government of South Sudan. This is an indication that the government take side and that it perform it duty in the tribal line. Furthermore, if any civilian was killed in Jonglie I guessed that could have been through cross shooting between the army forces.

Finally, the civilians particularly the white army weighed war against the government simply because the government they voted for killed their innocent children who went to Juba for business and looking for work. Not because they were mobilised by Dr Riek Machar.

The SPLA freedom fighters that joined the opposition did so because their families were killed while they were on duty in Unity State, in Jonglie State and in greater Equatoria region protecting the sovereignty of South Sudan. How on earth should a family of national army soldier plan coup when the father/mother is serving the nation elsewhere?

I call upon the government to show leadership this war. I will keep you update on new development in Juba.

The author of this paper is resident of Juba and can be contact by

An Integrated Response to Justice and Reconciliation in South Sudan

From: Sudan Press

By David Deng and Elizabeth Deng*

January 8, 2014 (SSNA) — As representatives of Salva Kiir and Riek Machar meet in Addis Ababa to negotiate a ceasefire to the conflict that has engulfed South Sudan in past weeks, the question of what a mediated outcome might look like is at the forefront of everyone’s mind. Judging from public statements made by the two sides, there does not appear to be much common ground between them. Kiir maintains that Machar has tried to claim power through violence and as such cannot be rewarded with a power-sharing arrangement. Machar asserts that Kiir is responsible for the mass killings that took place in Juba in mid-December 2013 and is no longer fit to lead the country.

In the face of increasingly vocal calls for accountability from international leaders and South Sudanese civil society, the two parties have begun to acknowledge the need to investigate crimes committed in Juba and elsewhere in the country. Taban Deng Gai, head of Machar’s delegation in the Addis talks, has called for free access for humanitarian organizations and United Nations Human Rights Council to investigate atrocities and human rights abuses. On its part, the Government has announced the creation of two committees: one to investigate the killing of innocent civilians and the other to examine the causes of the divisions within the presidential guard. These public statements are a welcome first step, but specific and binding commitments to accountability must be detailed in any negotiated settlement in order to ensure that investigations and prosecutions actually take place.

Peace processes in South Sudan have a long track record of prioritizing reconciliation at all costs and failing to secure remedies for people affected by conflict. The 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), which brought an end to the 22-year north-south civil war in Sudan, included only a vague reference to national reconciliation and neglected to mention the issue of accountability for past human rights violations. The ongoing efforts of the church-led Committee for National Healing, Peace and Reconciliation, established by presidential decree in April 2013, has so far been silent on the question of accountability. Past efforts to neutralize rebel groups in Jonglei, Unity and Upper Nile states have been initiated with offers of blanket amnesties and attractive political and military appointments; truth and justice have never figured in to the negotiations.

Sidelining justice in peace negotiations may help to expedite political settlements in the short-term, but it fails to adequately address the question of impunity that lies at the heart of internal conflicts in South Sudan. Attempts to bury the past also give rise to contested and obscured histories, sowing the seeds for continued abuses by political and military actors in the years to come.

To avoid repeating past mistakes, an integrated process of truth-telling, justice and reconciliation should be included in any mediated agreement between Kiir and Machar. The two parties should be compelled to submit themselves and their supporters to an independent investigation into the crimes committed. Those that are found to be responsible should be punished through fair and public judicial mechanisms. Handshakes, smiles and a mere political settlement between the two parties will not set South Sudan on a path towards truth, sustainable peace, democracy and rule of law.

The Need for a Hybrid Court

If the parties can agree to the principle of justice, the next question is how best to provide it in the context of South Sudan’s weak justice system. Past efforts to secure justice for crimes committed in the course of large-scale violence have all been hampered by the poor investigation capacity of police and prosecutors and the limited geographical reach of civilian courts. In Jonglei state, for example, thousands of people, including women and children, have been killed, tortured or abducted in the context of inter-communal violence, forced disarmament programs and government counter-insurgency campaigns in recent years. Yet, those responsible for the crimes, be they civilians, soldiers or politicians, have enjoyed almost total impunity.

Given the lack of capacity, credibility and independence of the justice system, it is clear that without international support, impartial investigations and prosecutions cannot take place. Such international support could best be provided within the framework of a hybrid court established within South Sudan’s judiciary. Hybrid courts have been deployed to address the legacy of large-scale conflict in countries such as Sierra Leone, East Timor, Kosovo and Cambodia. Senegal recently established a hybrid court to prepare a case against former Chadian president Hissène Habré. The defining feature of a hybrid court is that it is administered by a combination of national and international staff. By recruiting highly qualified judges, investigators, prosecutors and defense attorneys to work alongside their South Sudanese counterparts, a hybrid court can provide the support that is necessary for the fair adjudication of serious crimes, while helping to strengthen national accountability mechanisms and rule of law in the longer-term.

Due to the high cost of hybrid courts, the court’s focus would be limited to those who bear primary responsibility for planning, organizing or carrying out the most egregious crimes. In order to extend justice beyond cases tried by the hybrid court, prosecutions should also be brought before other South Sudanese courts. The judiciary could consider using its power to establish special courts with limited temporal and thematic jurisdiction to try crimes that have occurred since December 2013. In order to adequately address the crimes that have been committed, South Sudan must also ensure that its legal framework provides for the punishment of international crimes, including genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. As the penal code does not define these crimes, new legislation would be necessary.

Prosecutions in the hybrid court and formal judiciary could be linked to the customary court system to extend truth, justice and reconciliation processes to the grassroots level. South Sudan’s customary court system has a strong emphasis on restorative justice, in that chiefs and traditional authorities encourage disputing parties to talk through their differences and finding a solution that is acceptable to both parties. While customary courts are not legally empowered to adjudicate criminal responsibility, they are well positioned to promote reconciliation in circumstances where the line between perpetrator and victim is blurred. Customary courts could also play an important role in negotiating compensation awards and other civil remedies.

An Integrated Response to Truth, Justice and Reconciliation

Justice is only one part of a solution to the conflict in South Sudan. In order to heal the wounds caused by the recent violence, South Sudan must adopt an integrated response that incorporates truth-telling and meaningful reconciliation and ultimately seeks to transform South Sudan’s abusive and corrupt governance systems.

In 2013, the Government began trying to address South Sudan’s history of conflict through the establishment of a Committee for National Healing, Peace and Reconciliation. The Committee could make a valuable contribution to an integrated approach to truth, justice and reconciliation, but to do so, it would need to expand its mandate to include a truth-telling component. By providing a public platform for victims to tell their stories and perpetrators to confess to their wrongs and seek forgiveness, the Committee could help South Sudanese to build a national narrative of their troubled past.

There are other actions that the Government could take to build a culture of human rights in South Sudan. South Sudan has not yet ratified the core human rights treaties that prescribe the minimum standards by which a state must treat its citizens. The Government has acceded to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols and has ratified the Convention Against Torture, the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention Governing Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa, but it has not ratified the other core treaties, such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights or African Charter on Human and People’s Rights. In order to make clear the Government’s commitment to human rights and give victims and their representatives recourse to regional and international treaty monitoring bodies and complaint mechanisms, the Government should immediately ratify these treaties and domesticate them into national law. It should also sign on to the Rome Statute as a demonstration of its commitment to justice for international crimes.


South Sudan stands on a precipice. Viewing the crisis as a problem that can be solved by political and military class alone would repeat the same mistake that has been made in past negotiations. Hybrid courts require a great deal of political will, diplomatic effort and material resources to establish. Even if the parties were to agree, it would take many months to establish a hybrid court in South Sudan. Nonetheless, if South Sudan is to come to terms with the violent events of the past few weeks, it is vitally important that the issue of accountability be addressed in any negotiated agreement between Kiir and Machar. If the parties fail to agree on or to implement a mechanism for holding perpetrators of the violence accountable, the Security Council could consider referring the matter to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Until South Sudan’s leaders are made accountable to the people they serve and punished for the wrongs they commit, South Sudan will continue to experience violence like what we have seen in the past weeks and the dream of a peaceful and prosperous nation will never be realized.

*David Deng is the Research Director for the South Sudan Law Society (SSLS), a civil society organization based in South Sudan. Elizabeth Deng is a human rights lawyer based in Nairobi.

The Fabricated Coup (South Sudan): A Confession from a Party insider

From: Abdalah Hamis

By Jean C.B. [name withheld for security reasons]


December 30, 2013 (SSNA) — The fate of this young nation is in the hands of two men whose rivalry and distrust goes back to the beginning of SPLM/SPLA. What started out as a political problem is now threatening to take this young nation to the brink of a civil war. Dr. Machar having lost his vice presidential seat realized that his only mean of ascending to power is through the democratization of SPLM. Pres. Kiir, on the other hand, understood that democratization of the party is a threat to his regime. The demands put forward by Dr. Machar and Pagan Amum at the most recent party meeting were aimed at weakening the powers of the presidency. The long term goal was multi-partism and democracy in South Sudan. But Machar, Pagan and their other ten colleagues understood that; forming their own party would be deemed as betrayal by South Sudanese. And they are reluctant to leave a party which they have been participants in building and nurturing. Pres. Kiir demands the same level of reverence and respect that was accorded to the late Dr. John Garang. However, Kiir unlike Garang is not a consensus builder. He tends to be very frustrated by political process while Dr. Garang did not personalized politics, Kiir keeps political grudges and demand complete loyalty. His failure to enforce the appointment of Telar Riing as justice minister made him very skeptical of a democratic SPLM. Afterall, Kiir is a military General who abides by the Military code of conduct.

In short, out of fear of democratic process and Dr. Machar’s presidential ambitions, Pres. Kiir has resorted to his last option: amilitary rule. This was why the presidential Guards – a majority of whom are from Kiir’s very own subclan-was formed in the first place. The Guards main job was complete loyalty to Pres. Kiir, not to the South Sudan’s president or to the Rep. of South Sudan but to Kiir himself. The only reason there were some Nuers and a small numbers from other tribes within the group was due to fear of disintegration within the SPLA. In order to nationalize the army, it was necessary to integrate the military. This was supposed to weaken likely potential rebels. In particular, the late Gen. Matip Nhial, Gen.George Athor, Gatdet Yaak and Tanginye. And also to entice YauYau, who is still rebelling against South Sudan. The overall objective in forming the presidential Guards, was to ensure Pres. Kiir remains in power by any means necessary. The aim was to ruthlessly silent the democratic voices within the party led by Dr. Machar. It must be noted that Machar was only a de facto leader of the group due to his seniority within the party.

(b) The Plan: a fabricated Military Coup And why a Coup?

A fabricated coup was the only mean of ensuring Pres. Kiir remains in power as a “failed coup” in african context is almost always justified with an establishment of a brutal military regime. The plan was to either arrest/prosecute or assassinate some the 12 politicians. An emphasis of “dead or alive” was placed in Dr. Machar’s case. During this upheaval a strict curfew was to be established in juba, malakal and Bor. An immediate order was to be given to govt. Montytuil and govt. Kun pouch in unity and Upper Nile to protect the oil fields while re-inforcement arrived.

So what went wrong? For once the dreaded presidential guards being mostly young recruits and given their limited military experience in SPLA were extremely indiscipline in their execution of the presidential orders. A number of them having long held personal grievances against Machar and the Nuers in general for the Bor massacre of 1991, decided to carry out revenge attacks on the Nuer civilians in juba. This gave Machar time to escape. The guards also completely destroyed Dr. Machar’s home in juba and there was a speculation in the presidential circles that he might have been killed in the rubbles. This meant a couple of hours were wasted trying to find out machar’s whereabouts. And before long Gen. Gatdet in Bor had received intelligence about the massacre of Nuers in juba. Gatdet is well known for being a nationalist but a pro-nuer at heart. His objective was always to fight for Nuer first. His support for Machar is a consequence of his loyalty to Nuer and not on shared principles. As a result, Pres. Kiir and his confidants hope that Gatdet- given his new found faith in South Sudan Unity and his elevated status within the party- would take a couple of days before he get a wind of what was actually going on in Juba and make a decision to defect. During this time he would either have been persuaded to stay within the rank and let the judicial process take place or implicated in the “Coup”. Perhaps, Gatdet’s military experience and distrust of Koul Manyang and Kiir told him otherwise. Another major blow was the defection of Gen. Koang in Unity State- This was never anticipated by the high command. Kiir’s inner circle were generally inept in their execution of this plan. The major mistake was the luck of understanding of Nuer’s sentiments in the SPLA and in the populace. And the desire to deny the Nuers any elevated status within the movement by some of the staunch supporters of Pres. Kiir. There was a fear that the Nuer would coalesce around Machar upon his arrest but that ultimately Gen. Hoth Mai might be in a position to re-establish order if needed.

(c) IGAD/Geopolitics: Kenyatta & Museveni

Once, the high command received the information that Machar had escaped and that Gatdet had defected. Two objectives were put in place:

1. To immediately put down any potential mutiny within Juba. This means the execution and imprisonment of some of the senior members of SPLA who were deemed loyal to Dr. Machar. Particularly, those from Lou Nuer and Bentiu.

2. A call was made to Pres. Museveni and to Pres. Kenyatta for support. Museveni and Machar have a long history of distrust given that Museveni believed Machar “financed” the LRA. A rebel group that created havoc in northern Uganda. And Machar is not very fond of Museveni’s dictatorial tendencies and interference in South Sudan’s politics.

Mr. Kenyatta , on the other hand, wants Pipeline through Kenya and Pres. Kiir promised to deliver. Major investment plans have already been put in place to this effect. Kenya would immensey benefit from the pipeline. Machar was reluctant about the cost of building such a pipeline and believed that Kenya will hold South Sudan hostage once the pipeline has been built. Kiir would rather see a pipeline through Kenya as he didn’t trust Bashir regime. Ethiopia was not cantacted until guarantees had been made by Mr. Kenyatta and Mr. Museveni. Once support was established Mr. Kenyatta was used to woe Ethiopia’s prime minister. Note that Ethiopia is generally seen as sympathetic to Machar as there is a large population of Nuers in Ethiopia. In fact, a whole sub-clan of Nuer (Gaajak) live in Ethiopia. Furthermore, Kenyatta having been a beneficiary of tribal politics and a victim of Mr. Odinga’s political maneuvers, understood Pres. Kiir’s sentiments on Dr. Machar’s presidential ambitions. Note that Kenyatta was very supportive of Moi’s anti-multipartism in the early 1990s. He was a product of KANU- a party very much like South Sudan’s SPLM- and a beneficiary of one party rule and tribal politics. The results of the two recent elections in Kenya provide a strong evidence of tribal politics and Uhuru’s desire to transcend such politics. A goal he ultimately failed. He has been accused of instigating tribal violence that killed upto 1500 people and displaced more than 25,000 civilians. Kenyatta’s case was recently dropped due to “insufficient” evidence. However, Kenyatta’s reputation is still tarnished and the West does not trust him. Any positive efforts in helping solve South Sudan’s crisis would be welcomed by the West. There is also Chinese economic interest in East Africa and there is fear that Kenyatta’s effort might not be genuine. He is likely to be on the side of the Chinese/Khartoum.

Once this two objectives had been achieved. The next goal was to convince the international community and in particular the US government that indeed Dr. Machar carried out a coup. The problem however, was persuading Susan Rice and John Kerry to this fact. Dr. Rice having interacted with both Pres. Kiir and Dr. Machar was very skeptical. She does not believe it was in the best interest of Machar to carry out a coup. How was he going to do so without an army at his disposal? Why would he carry out a coup given that he was winning the political battle within the party? And why would Machar wants to use his tribe to face the army of South Sudan given the painful memories of 1991 and his current support from some Dinka leaders? And who would finance him given China and Sudan had made a deal with GOSS? There were too many unanswered questions. The US government did not buy into the coup allegations. The explanation given by Dr. Adwok, that there was aninfighting in the presidential Guards, was deemed more plausible.


The next step was to re-take Bor from Gen. Gatdet. Pres. Kiir then gave UPDF- Uganda’s military- the permission to bomb Gatdet’s strategic position in Bor. Machar did not want a repeat of 1991 and asked Gatdet to pull out. The truth is there was no “re-take of Bor” by the GOSS troops. Gatdet had already pulled out some hours before the government troops arrived in Bor. The skirmishes in Bor were from a small group left behind by Gatdet as a decoy. This allowed him to escape. But not before he made a major mistake in mistaking US aircraft for UPDF Planes. This was both unfortunate and very costly to Machar’s effort in persuading the US of his non-participant in the alleged coup.

(e) The Strategic Stalement: is Machar Cornered?

Right now, the objective is to re-take the oilfields and to counter any move Machar is likely to make. Pres. Kiir has succeeded so far in winning IGAD to his side. Machar is left with Khartoum and some oil fields. Machar’s demands on the surface seem basic and reasonable but in the bigger scheme of politics; they constitute a great threat to Kiir’s objective of a military rule. Machar wants the detainees to be released. He wants Pagan Amum – a nationalist and a shrewd negotiator- on his side. Pres. Kiir would be foolish in releasing Mr. Amum. And he has used Pagan’s past alleged corruption charges to keep him under arrest. Machar also wants a “credible ceasefire” to be negotiated. This would give him enough time to re-established his contacts and re-group with his detained colleagues giving them an equal status on the negotiating table and taking Kiir’s a long step-on.

Any form of power sharing would mean Machar would achieve his objective of democratizing the SPLM. In short, Machar- being the strategist -is thinking three steps ahead. But for Machar’s plan to work, he needs some leverage. Currently he has three options: The oilfields in Unity/UpperNile, The White army and Bashir/Chinese. Given Machar’s overall goal – complete independence of South Sudan from the North- the third option would be his desperate and last move. The use of White army would lead to unnecessary bloodshed in Bor and Akobo. There are some Lou Nuer in Akobo segments who are skeptical of Machar but given John Luk Jok- Akobo’s son- is in detention, Machar can persuade the Lou Nuer. And Machar needs both the Bor/twic and Lou Nuer on his side. Creating a war between the two sub-clans would leads to a result very similar to 1991. This would ultimately undermine Dr. Machar’s presidential ambition and little support from the international community. Most of his colleagues in detention are mostly Dinkas. He needs to convince the world and the Dinka community that he is not weighing a tribal warfare. While he might not be entirely convincing, he would create some doubts within the Dinka community. He needs to be seen as a non-tribalist.

The best option and the most credible move Machar is likely to make is holding Pres. Kiir’s government hostage. Machar will in effect attempt to control the oilfields in Upper Nile and Unity. But for him to get financing he needs to be able to re-direct the oil revenues to a bank account he can control. This would mean he must either make a deal with Bashir/Chinese or simply use both the oilfields and a negotiated ceasefire as a “credible threat”.

In order for Machar to retain his current control of Unity oil fields; he must control Mayom county and make a direct threat to overtaking Warrap state. He must tempt Pres. Kiir to direct all effort to Warrap state and maintain a hold of Kuajok. This would leave Jonglei vulnerable as the SPLA with its limited resources will be overstretched. Machar will then solidify his control of Akobo and use Bor as a ploy to keep hold of Mayom while being in a good position to negotiate. It should be noted that Machar is a product of the civil war and can be very resourceful. It would be a mistake for Kiir to undermine any proposals he make. Even if these demands seem rather odd. Machar is a shrewd strategist. He will not admit to defeat. The tribal politics of south sudan dictates that both the Dinka and the Nuer be participants, if there is to be any national building. Otherwise, civil war is likely to occur.

(f) What is the best outcome for South Sudan?

The best outcome for the country is for Pres. Kiir to negotiate right away with Dr. machar. Eventually, the SPLA will democratize and Pres. Kiir can still win election under a democratic South Sudan. He is likely to garner atleast the majority (51%) in any given election. Perhaps, he won’t negotiate due to influence from his close confidants (Telar Aring, Hoth Mai, Mr. Makeui Lueth, Mr. Juuk) who have more to lose in a democratic SPLM.

An immediate release of all political detainees (particularly, Mr. Amum and Mr. Alor) is a very unlikely outcome in the short run. The truth is the stalemate is likely to continue until Dr. Machar is in a strong negotiation position. A scenario I don’t foresee anytime soon. In so far, as Machar is not in a position to procure external financing, he is unlikely to achieve his short term objectives: a negotiated ceasefire settlement and the release of ALL detainees. If indeed Dr. Machar manages to somehow negotiate for himself a favorable result, it will only speak volume of his strategic capabilities and the loyalty he commands from the Nuer people. As the situation stands, Pres. Kiir is in a winnable position, but a position that could ultimately lead to the very dreaded civil war if he overplay his hand and tempt fate. Makuei and Kol Manyang are currently persuading him in that direction. This would be an ill-advised move, as it would simply prolong the stalemate and led to civil war.

After many decades of warfare, 2014 should be a year of re-unification for South Sudanese. It’s upon the two leaders to put aside their differences for the sake of national interest. Politics must stop at the water’s edge.

A Message to Actualizers of Doom: President Kiir and Dr. Machar

From: Yona Maro

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By Kuir ë Garang

December 25, 2013 (SSNA) — It’s an undeniable fact that South Sudanese former Vice President, Riek Machar, and South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir Mayardit, have done something most of us will not find easy to forgive. They’ve reminded us of the past nightmares and caused unspeakable bloodshed! Intentionally or unintentionally, they caused Jieng and Nuer to turn against one another with vengeance …and they’ve now turned young people against one another on social media.

The conscientious and strong-minded youths have resisted mental tribalization; however, many youths have been divided along tribal and clannish lines. They are calling themselves names and writing statements they’ll regret tomorrow when sanity returns.

I blame the leaders for starting the mess and I also blame the young for being overly gullible and markedly credulous!

As most of you know, I’ve always criticized President Kiir’s leadership; however, I’d accepted the fact that he’s a humble person being misled by power-seeking people around him; and that he’d soon see the truth and change the country for better. I was being too optimistic!

And I’ve always believed that Dr. Riek Machar has seen a lot of needless bloodshed when SPLA/SPLM split in 1991…and that he would never, ever support armed rebellion in South Sudan again. I was wrong! Riek’s support of the rebellion is unforgivable. I am a living witness of 1991 atrocities as I lived through it to the end!

Besides, violent removal of the president should have no place in South Sudan no matter what!

Riek Machar

We all know that President Kiir had turned autocratic and a little lax when it came to meaningful transformation of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) into a well-functioning political party. In addition, we all know that you and your colleagues had given President Kiir enough chances to do the right thing. There’s no doubt VP James Wani Igga and President Kiir have made fun of you in their public addresses instead of showing true leadership. Arguably, the events leading to the mutiny and the mutiny itself can’t be blamed on you and your colleagues per se!

However, you’ve lost sight of the truth you wanted to establish. It’s one thing to ‘democratize’ SPLM and South Sudan, and it’s another thing to support a rebellion. Supporting another rebellion is a mistake you’ll never recover from whether a peaceful settlement to his crisis is arrived at or not.

Jieng and Nuer tribes suffered immensely as a result of your rebellion, with Dr. Lam Akol in 1991, and these two communities are suffering as a result of a rebellion you now support. A lot of blood is in your hands: 8 years after 1983 and 8 years after 2005!

Your only redemption is to bring this conflict to a speedy end without any political benefit going to you personally.

You failed to have civilians protected in areas controlled by SPLA commanders who’ve pledged allegiance to you. Civilians were slaughtered in the towns of Akobo, Bentiu, Bor and violent deaths in other places like Pariang and Abiemnom. Why didn’t you unequivocally instruct your commanders to protect civilians? Why didn’t you even send a message of condolences to families who’ve lost loved one…be they Jieng or Nuer?

The deaths of innocent civilians remove any nationalist and moral conscience in you! You reflected yourself as a power-hungry and callous man who’d do anything to get to power! Redeem yourself in unequivocal terms!

President Kiir

I know it’s painful and even wrong for senior members of your own party to criticize you in public. There’s no country in the world where people from the same political party criticize themselves viciously and irresponsibly in the media. I agree with you that Riek Machar was wrong in publicly criticizing you. Riek, first as South Sudan VP, and as the chairman of SPLM, could have used internal avenues to solve internal party problems. I believe these are some of the ways you’ve been wrong.

However, Mr. President, you are the president of South Sudan and exemplary leadership should come from you. You’ve failed miserably in this regard. Remember, you are a president of international caliber and what you say is heard all over the world. It’s therefore imperative that you do some research before any public addresses. Saying things you can’t prove only makes fun of your personality and the presidency of South Sudan. Kawajat need proofs for one to maintain credibility!

If people around you can’t research the facts you say in your speeches then FIRE them.

Admittedly, the members of SPLM Political Bureau, who disagreed with you gave you enough chances and time to do the right thing. Instead of you showing leadership, you resorted to abuse and foul language not fit for the presidency. When the dissident group came out on December 6, 2013, your VP, James Wani Igga, instead of acting like a leader, resorted to abusive, childish language against the SPLM members…calling them ‘disgruntled.’

To give you benefit of the doubt, these members postponed the rally to give reconciliation a chance but all you did in the National Liberation Council meeting was to act irresponsibly by using divisive language causing some of the said SPLM members to walk out of the meeting in protest.

To add pepper to a bad wound, on December 15, 2013, after the mutiny, you came out, not as president of South Sudan, but as a military General ready for war. That was irresponsible! Whoever told you that should be FIRED!

The saddest part of it all was that you came out and called the mutiny a ‘coup’ without providing verifiable proofs that what happened on December 15, 2013 was actually a ‘coup.’

Don’t say anything you can’t prove! Never believe anything you’re told without any proof. This is a world of proofs! Factual evidence should be your strength; assumption will bury your leadership and give grounds for your prosecution.

The world hasn’t condemned what you called ‘attempted coup’ because you’ve not provided them with any PROOF and what you continue to say is plain nonsense. Not condemning the ‘coup’ is a big embarrassment to you and South Sudan.

Without doubt, you mishandled the affairs of SPLM and you mishandled the events after the mutiny and now a lot of blood is in your hands. Unless you bring the perpetrators of Juba atrocities to book immediately!

The sooner you end this crisis the better life would be for you or else, ICC would come snooping for evidence to put you away with your naïve rival, Riek Machar.

Never, ever, ever say something you can’t prove. How could your body guards allow someone to shoot outside NLC venue and get away? Why didn’t your body guards either pursue that lone soldier or shoot him!

If someone actually shot in the air outside NLC meeting and your body guards let him run away, then you have to investigate your body guards and someone got to pay. Otherwise the world would just assume you made it up!

You haven’t actually told the world what exactly happened at the army headquarters. Why did the Tiger battalion, a unit of the presidential guards, shoot themselves leading to the mutiny and then armed rebellion?

Your intelligence officers need to give South Sudanese and the world proofs of where the coup was plotted, who was present, what was said etc. South Sudan’s intelligence leaders should present documents, audios, secret video recordings of the coup plot. Without these proofs, Mr. President, you are setting yourself up for ICC investigation.

If all the things you say come from your advisors then FIRE them because they are setting you up for failure and public ridicule.

Kuir ë Garang is an author of seven books including “South Sudan Ideologically” and “Is ‘Black’ Really Beautiful?” For contacts see Twitter: @kuirthiy or his blog,

South Sudan mishandles the pro-Machar ‘coup’

From: Yona Maro

The on-going security situation in South Sudan has raised serious concerns about the future of Africa’s newest nation. Andrews Atta-Asamoah, a senior researcher at the ISS, talks about the causes of the fighting and how the situation can be addressed.

Why an alleged ‘coup’ so early in the history of South Sudan?

First of all, I feel it is important that we clarify whether what has happened constitutes a coup d’état or not. This is because the definition will have implications for how those arrested will be seen by the current leadership of South Sudan. My interpretation of the situation as per information available seems to point to a mutiny among the presidential guards along the lines of existing loyalties to the two main political protagonists in South Sudan – President Salva Kiir and Dr Riek Machar.

It was therefore, at least initially, not an attempt to wrestle political power by violent means, as first announced by the president in his press conference on 16 December 2013. It might be an accidental situation that developed as a result of the nature of the response of the pro-Kiir elements within the army to the initial fighting. So far, Dr Machar has denied any involvement in and knowledge of a coup in the country. If the government wants to continue marketing the situation as a coup meant to take power by violent means, it needs to provide a much more convincing narrative.

Based on what you have just said, do you think that the government has handled the situation in the best of ways?

In my view, by rushing to call the situation an attempted coup, directly blaming his former vice president and interpreting events against the backdrop of the 1991 split within the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM), President Kiir virtually set the stage for the situation to worsen. Even by appearing in a military uniform, his demeanour over-militarised the situation and set the tone for the events we have witnessed in the last couple of days.

By rushing to call it a coup and saying that his government was in charge, he immediately politicised the situation. Subsequent responses in arresting people who are popularly known to be his political opponents then directly fed into Dr Machar’s narrative that the president was using the situation to deal with dissenting voices in the SPLM.

If it had been well handled, it could have remained limited to fighting in the military barracks rather than turn into fighting between pro-Kiir and pro-Machar elements and ethnic groups in the manner we have seen over the last couple of days.

What would you blame for the current unrest in South Sudan?

The current unrest has its immediate roots in the growing tensions within the SPLM in preparation for the 2015 presidential elections. There are people in the party who feel President Kiir has surrounded himself with anti-reform elements and is therefore growing increasingly dictatorial in his dealings with the party. According to these elements, including former vice president Machar and Pagan Amum, the deposed secretary-general of the SPLM, the president’s actions are stifling internal party democracy and making party structures dysfunctional.

These criticisms are held by majority of the members of the former cabinet who were dismissed en masse along with the former vice president in July this year. Since then, these issues have continued to stoke tensions in the party. Dr Machar has declared his interest in the chairmanship of the SPLM and this is certainly a threat to President Kiir following indications that Dr Machar is making inroads in winning support within the decision-making structures of the party. The associated tension between the two camps in the party has fed the current situation.

However, the situation worsened because of the extent to which the two political protagonists have support bases in the army and along ethnic lines. It was thus easy for the tensions to feed on existing cleavages in South Sudanese society along the lines of inter-tribal suspicions within the army, between the largely Nuer pro-Machar group and dominant Dinka pro-Kiir elements. Now the situation has worsened beyond the capital, also fuelled largely by historical fault lines of ethnic suspicions, over-militarisation of the political landscape, and longstanding splits in the political and military leadership of the country.

In my view, these issues were worsened by the nature of the response by the pro-Kiir elements of the army, once the president declared it an attempt to take power through a coup d’état.

What is the danger ahead?

At the moment, the situation has been ethnicised. Unfortunately, it has become a Nuer and Dinka issue, despite the efforts by the government to create a different narrative. My biggest fear is that the situation has worsened existing ethnic cleavages in the new country and that South Sudan will never be the same. In the same way that a bitter narrative exists around the Bor Massacre in 1991 among some of the ethnic groups, so too will a new narrative emerge among the Nuer about this December 2013 incident. This will entrench the existing suspicion between the Nuer and Dinka and particularly the fear of Dinka dominance in the history of the country.

We also need to watch how the government handles the politicians who have been arrested. They represent important political and ethnic constituencies in the country. As such, anything that happens to them might define how the efforts at cohesion are received after this situation is contained.

How should the situation be handled at the moment?

Restraint on the part of pro-Kiir forces is important amid the confusion in the country. Any push by this group against pro-Machar elements will be misconstrued as an attack on the Nuer and will continue to ethnicise and worsen the situation. Restraint on the part of the government is therefore very important.

The government might also need to renounce its much-publicised intensions to arrest Dr Machar. Instead it might consider inviting him through a respected regional or international mediator for dialogue. But there are questions around this move, because Dr Machar has so far denied all knowledge of and association with any coup, so how does he then become a representative for the confusion created by the situation? That said, I think Dr Machar will do his reputation a lot of good if he not only distances himself from the situation but also condemns the use of violence and calls for calm among his loyalists as a matter of priority, and in the interest of peace.

In the same way, the government will need to consider whether the interests of peace will be served by keeping those arrested in custody.

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Kenya: When we finish our own citizens through killing of each other, who are we going to rule?

From: Yona Maro

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By Abraham Deng Luth

December 25, 2013 (SSNA) –Dear my fellow citizens, please, pray for Jieng people in Malakal! I am hearing very disturbing news! To my fellow citizens from Nuer, urge your people in Malakal to refrain from killing civilians. Do your best to stop this war and urge Dr. Riek to accept dialogue; it is not a good idea to overthrow President Kiir but he can step down if his conscience tells him so or the parliament can act. Otherwise, let’s wait for 2015. So, our current issues have several solutions but overthrowing Kiir by force is not one of them.

This is because if one of your own, a nuer, comes to power today, you will not want the Dinkas or the Equatorians to do what you are doing today? Overthrowing an elected president is not a good precedence for a nation that wants to develop itself.

This unwarranted war is a waste of our national resources in terms of its countless lives and economic apparatus! The aggression has gone wild and people are killing each other like they don’t want to live with each other again at all! This is sad! More Jieng people are being killed. This is evidence in Akobo, Bor, Bentiu, andnow in Malakal. So, please, stop the killings. You have made your points and you are heard. So, let’s sit down and talk.

President Kiir may just call it a quit to save lives and let the Nuers take over! There seems to be several forces acting on the Nuer militia and their aggression seems to be nonstop (suicide mission i.e. The Nuers vs. The Nation) These forces, as one of my Nuer friends told me, are successive marginalization policies (that the Nuers are treated like a second class citizens), president kiir’s dictatorship styles, Juba Killings and Ngundeeng’s prophecies!

To my Nuer brothers and sisters, I do not know much about Ngundeng’s prophecies but from what I heard, one of them was that many people will die before South Sudan can be a better nation for all but I think enough have died. The president is calling for dialogue. Ngundeeng’s prophecies can also be achieved through dialogue. So, please, stop the violence and let’s try to sit down and talk ourselves to peace and the nation we want to build together.

The president needs to see this violence with a new frame; it has nothing to do with what or how it started! It has taken a form and life of its own! Addressing it needs a new thinking, a fresh look!

The President can do the following things to help create viable conditions for dialogue:

1. Apologize to the Nuers for the atrocities committed in Juba by his security apparatus
2. Apologize to the people of South Sudan for his misrules
3. Tell the people of South Sudan that he is ready to step down if that is what people would want to see to stop killing each other
4. Issue amnesty to Dr. Riek and his forces and release the detainees
5. Ask for a dialogue and reiterate his willingness to step down unless the people want him to continue until 2015
6. Announcing that he is not going to run for re-election in 2015
7. Call for a meeting of all South Sudanese political and social forces to discuss the ways out of this mess
8. Ask for a full support of the peace process by the regional and international communities
9. Stop the use of force and only participate in war when attacked (ceasefire)
10. Stop involving other countries, militarily, in South Sudan affairs unless they are neutral and not supporting one side
Dr. Riek will need to do the following things on his side as well:

1. Apologize for the loss of innocent lives as a result of his forces aggression on civilians
2. Order his forces to stop aggression toward the Dinkas
3. Accept ceasefire: stay where he is now and no more advancement and attack
4. Accept dialogue
5. Commit himself to the peace and reconciliation that he started a while back in the areas that he controls
6. Ask for a full support of the peace process by the regional and international communities
NB: If these are done and a peace is achieved, the South Sudanese people may support the pardoning of criminal charges.

Abraham Deng Lueth is a Community Support Specialist at Truman Behavioral health Emergency Department in Kansas City, Missouri, United States; he is the President of Greater Bor Community-USA. He previously worked as a critical care laboratory technician and conducted an independent undergraduate biomedical research project which was published in the Plant Science Journal in 2007.

Statement of Sudanese and South Sudanese Civil Society on the Conflict in South Sudan

from: Yona Maro

December 25, 2013 (SSNA) — We, the undersigned, representatives of civil society organisations from Sudan and the Republic of South Sudan wish to express our deep concern about the military confrontations that erupted in the Republic of South Sudan on 15 and 16 December 2013. We are utterly disturbed that the violence, which started in Juba, the capital of South Sudan, has now spread to other parts of the country. This unexpected development threatens the foundation of the nascent nation and puts to jeopardy the safety and well-being of its citizens.

We wish to stress our conviction that violence and the destruction of lives and livelihoods serve no purpose and deepen the humanitarian and human rights challenges faced by the government and people of South Sudan. It is also our belief that open and free dialogue that yield a mutually accepted agreement reached through the informed opinion of all the concerned parties, constitute the only way to resolve the current political differences in South Sudan.

We appeal to the political leadership of the Republic of South Sudan to put the interest and aspirations of the populace for peaceful coexistence, progress, development and happiness as their prime objective and mission. This requires greater political sacrifices from all the conflicting parties in South Sudan and we are confident that all those concerned in that part of our country are bestowed with the necessary courage and wisdom to pursue such objectives.

We appeal to the President of the Republic of South Sudan to release, with immediate effect, all persons held for expressing political views critical of the government performance and to start, without conditions, a process of national reconciliation and political dialogue with such persons and with those who are currently under arms against the government.

We appeal to the Heads of State and Government members of the African Union, particularly members of the IGAD countries, to continue to place the situation in South Sudan as a top priority on their agendas and to consider rendering their good offices and personal intervention with the parties to the conflict in view of reaching a negotiated peaceful settlement of the on-going conflict.

We appeal to all States neighbour of the Republic of South Sudan to refrain from interfering in its internal affairs or to extend military or similar support to any party to the conflict or to take advantage of the situation for ulterior motives, but to play instead a role of promoting dialogue and reconciliation between the parties for a peaceful South Sudan.

We appeal to the humanitarian community to redouble their efforts in providing the necessary humanitarian assistance and make available basic materials needed by a growing number of civilians in different parts of the country.

We pay due tribute to all the victims of the on-going conflict, including UN staff and peacekeepers, who lost their lives on the line of duty.


1. Abdelbagi Jibril: Darfur Relief and Documentation Centre
2. Dr. Abdelgabar Adam: Darfur Human Rights Organization of the USA
3. Abdelmageed Haroun: HAND
4. Biel Botrous Biel: South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy
5. Bushra Gamar Hussein Rahma: South Kordofan Human Rights and Development Organisation
6. Faisal El-Bagir: Journalists for Human Rights (JHR-Sudan)
7. Dr. Farouk Mohamed Ibrahim: Sudanese Organisation for the Defence of Rights and Freedoms
8. Hafiz Mohamed Ismael: Justice Africa Sudan
9. Hala Alkarib: Regional Director, SIHA Network
10. Dr. Hamid El-Tigani Ali: Associate Professor, American University in Cairo
11. Jimmy Mulla: Voices for Sudan
12. Dr. Luka Biong Deng: Kush Inc.
13. Mahjoub Mohammed Salih: Editor-in-Chief, Al-Ayam Newspaper
14. Mohamed Abdalla El-Doma: Darfur Bar Association
15. Dr. M. Jalal Hashim: Sudanese Association for the Defence of Freedom of
Opinion and Conscience (SADFOC)
16. Nabil Adib Abdalla: Sudan Human Rights Monitor
17. Dr. Nada Mustafa Ali: Visiting Professor, Women and Gender Studies, Clark University
18. Nasredeen Abdulbari: Columbia University
19. Niemat Ahmadai: Darfur Women Action Group
20. Osman Hummaida: African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies
21. Rashid Saeed Yagoub: Journalist , France
22. Shamsaddin Dawalbait: Project on Democratic Thought and Islamic Reform
23. Professor Sidiga Washi: Babiker Badri Scientific Association for Women Studies
24. Sabri Elshareef: Center for Democracy and Peace, New Jersey
25. Dr. Suliman Baldo: Sudan Democracy First Group
26. Suliman Hamid: Blue Nile Center For Justice and Human Rights
For media contacts:

1. Geneva: Abdelbagi Jibril: +41 79 737 97 49 and +41 76 360 95 26
2. Kampala: Biel Botrous Biel: +256 778 89 67 45
3. New York: Suliman Baldo: +1 646 467-3724

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Pillay urges South Sudan leadership to curb alarming violence against civilians

From: Yona Maro

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GENEVA (24 December 2013) – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay on Tuesday expressed grave concern over the serious and growing human rights violations taking place daily in South Sudan during the past 10 days, calling on the leadership on both sides to protect civilians and refrain from instigating violence based on ethnic grounds.

“Mass extrajudicial killings, the targeting of individuals on the basis of their ethnicity and arbitrary detentions have been documented in recent days,” Pillay said. “We have discovered a mass grave in Bentiu, in Unity State, and there are reportedly at least two other mass graves in Juba.”

The High Commissioner also expressed serious concern about the safety of those who have been arrested and are being held in unknown locations, including several hundred civilians who were reportedly arrested during house-to-house searches and from various hotels in Juba. Hundreds of members of the South Sudan National Police Service were also reportedly ordered to be disarmed and arrested from police stations across Juba.

Pillay reiterated her call on the authorities to reveal the whereabouts of all those who have been detained, including political leaders, and to refrain from conducting further arbitrary detentions.

The violence in South Sudan has already sparked massive displacement, with more than 40.000 internally displaced people who have sought refuge in the compounds of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). The total number of the displaced population is expected to be much higher, with people reportedly seeking shelters in churches and other locations.

“There is a palpable fear among civilians of both Dinka and Nuer backgrounds that they will be killed on the basis of their ethnicity,” Pillay said. “There need to be clear statements and clear steps from all those in positions of political and military control that human rights violations will not be tolerated and those responsible will be brought to justice.”

Under international law, those in positions of political and military control can be held responsible for violations committed by those under their leadership. The High Commissioner urged all senior leaders, both within and outside the Government, to take immediate steps to prevent further human rights violations.

She also called on the international community to strengthen its efforts to assist in the protection of civilians and the UN presence, including through a strengthened UNMISS.


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Plan for Peace Transition, South Sudan

From: Yona Maro

Alliance for South Sudanese in Diaspora (ASSD) Plan for Peace Transition in the Republic of South Sudan

Washington, DC, December 24, 2013 (SSNA) — The current crisis in the Republic of South Sudan caught many by surprise, and the violence shows no signs of slowing down, much less stopping. Thousands of innocent lives, through target killings, have been lost mostly in the hands of government forces in general and the presidential guards in particular. The killings, which ensued after infighting among the presidential guard – the cause of the war, enrage the entire world community, but less has been done to hold the culprits to account. The carnage continues to this moment. Civilians are stranded in what are nothing short of concentration camps and food, water, and other basic service are denied. Shocked by the direction the country is taking and afraid of an imminent slide into civil war, concerned South Sudanese – Americans in the US have organized themselves under the umbrella of Alliance for South Sudanese in Diaspora (ASSD) to educate the American public, concerned US government agencies, congress, the Whitehouse and the UN, about the realities on the ground so as to devise and advocate for plans for an immediate cessation of hostilities, delivery of humanitarian assistance, and a return to peace. The body is urging the UN to do more and formulate the following recommendations to immediately rescue the situation.

Formation of interim administration, assisted by the IGAD, AU, UN and the US, to oversee the dialogue between the warring parties so that no party is in the position of power. This is because the current administration lost credibility in the eyes of the populace as it is implicit in the crisis and the subsequent carnage

Immediate evacuation of all the refugees now resettle in the UNMISS camp to their states of origin. The refugees are in danger of reprisals and the UNMISS currently has no capacity to protect them should armed groups decide to take matters into their own hands

Formation of investigative committees to investigate the massacre of innocent Nuer civilians in Juba

Disengagement of the neighboring countries, like Uganda and others from involving in the affairs of South Sudan

Separating individuals from the core problem and shifting focus to the needs and aspirations of population

Involvement of the ASSD in the coordination of the peace efforts between different factions from the opposition

Contact ASSD:

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