From: South Sudan Press
Mr. Barack Obama
President of the United States of America,
The Rt. Hon David Cameron MP
The Prime Minister of United Kingdom,
Mrs. Erna Solberg
The Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Norway
June 7, 2014 (SSNA) — It is with heavily saddened hearts that we, the Concerned South Sudanese in the United Kingdom, reach to you for assistance in stopping the ongoing carnage in South Sudan.
We remain appreciative of the roles played by your countries in the realization of South Sudan the Right to Self-Determination, an achievement if not for your continuous endeavours would have not been easy to accomplish.
It is unfortunate that the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which brought an end to the previous two decades of war and enabled the people of South Sudan to vote for the country of their own in the 2011 referendum, did not do much in the way of a democratic transformation.
Today South Sudan is once again caught up in a war that pits its two largest ethnic communities against one another. Although the crisis in the country might have begun as a political disagreement within the ruling SPLM/A, the reality on the ground today significantly portrays an indiscriminate killings between the Dinka and the Nuer. In some instances other tribal groups like the Chollo (Shilluk) were too caught up in the midst of these killings and suffered some worse losses of lives to target killings, displacements and loss of property. Thousands of innocent lives have already perished and over a million people are forced out of their homes as a direct consequence of this war.
We are aware and appreciative of all the efforts being put together by the Troika and the other members of the international community as represented in the United Nations Security Council, the European Union and the African Union and the regional body of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in an attempt to stop the current war to save South Sudan the risk of going the Rwanda way of 1994 genocide.
However, given the pace by which the peace talks between the government of President Salva Kiir and the rebels of the SPLM/A, in Opposition, there is much to be concerned about. The Cessation of Hostilities signed on May 9th by the president Mr. Salva Kiir and former vice president Dr Riek Machar and that mediated by the IGAD signed on the 23rd January 2014, both have never been observed by the warring sides.
We believe that much needs to be done from the side of the International Community including your respective governments in a way of bringing pressure to bear on the two sides.
The declared targeted sanctions by the Obama administration are welcomed. However, we understand that most of these individuals orchestrating the crazy killings have their assets outside the USA. Unless the other countries like Australia, Uganda, Kenya, South Africa, Ethiopia, Britain and some European Countries join in executing these sanctions, the intended purpose of the sanctions may not bring about the expected outcome.
While everything is being done to bring an end to the war, we would like to draw the attention of those involved in the process to realize a couple of issues:
§ We ask that the peace talks in Addis Ababa should deal with national issues comprehensively, prioritizing discussion on arrangements for cessation of hostilities and permanent ceasefire, civilian protection and opening of safe humanitarian corridors.
§ It is important that any solution to this crisis takes into full consideration the feelings of the victims, who are very much traumatized by the actions of mainly the two leaders of SPLM/A President Salva Kiir and Dr Riek Machar, including their notorious commanders, should not be rewarded by a way of power sharing.
§ The people of South Sudan can only put behind them the ongoing trauma caused by the onslaughts if they see the main perpetrators brought to justice and not rewarded by political positions or any form of incentives.
§ The Government and the rebels to immediately cease fire and fully abide by the conditions of the IGAD peace agreements signed in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia. They should have quickly recognized the impact of the war right from the beginning and since both have not taken responsibility, we urge that they should be forced to accept unconditional cease fire and end the killing of innocent civilians, followed by accountability towards their roles in this war.
§ The people of South Sudan can only feel that justice has been served when the current government is replaced by a Credible Interim Government of National Unity excluding President Salva Kiir Mayardit and the former Vice president Dr Riek Machar.
We support a national dialogue where all political parties, civil societies, women organizations and various faith groups to come together to discuss; the future form of governance for the country, immediate reform in all government institutions for the common good, the permanent constitution and the guidelines for the Interim Government of technocrats and it’s mandates, and to effect preparation for the first True Democratic General Election post-independence.
The SPLM/A leadership of President Salva Kiir and former president Dr Riek Machar should accept that a fair and just society and democratic political governing system in South Sudan cannot be engineered and constructed only by SPLM/A dominated by the two ethnic communities, it is not going to achieve the purpose of total democratic principles because South Sudan is a multi-ethnic nation with different political parties and diverse regional, cultural and social variations.
We believe that if every point raised in this letter is given due consideration and implemented, peace and stability can return to South Sudan quicker than ever expected.
With the backing of the international community and specially the Troika, an interim administration to be run by technocrats from within the South Sudanese communities, will for sure prepare the country for its first ever general elections under a fair democratic constitution.
Thanks in anticipation for your most needed support and looking forward for your response.
Benjamin Taban (Chairman)
Karlo Kwol Akol
Representatives of Coordinating Committee
On behalf of the Concerned South Sudanese in the United Kingdom
CC: Hailemariam Dessalegn
Prime Minister of the FDRE and Chairman of IGAD Assembly
CC: Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit
President, the Republic of South Sudan
CC: Dr Riek Machar Teny
Chairman, SPLM/A (In Opposition) and former Vice President OF Republic of South