Holdout groups to be included in ceasefire monitoring mechanism

Holdout groups to be included in ceasefire monitoring mechanism
The members of the Sant’Egidio Community pose for a photo. [Photo: Courtesy]

The Community of Sant’Egidio is planning to include Real SPLM under Pagan Amum and SSUF/A under Paul Malong in the ceasefire monitoring by the end of March 2022.

This was agreed upon at the workshop conducted between December 14 and December 17, 2021, in Nairobi, Kenya, where a plan to resume the negotiation was also hatched.

A statement released by Sant’Egidio community shows that the inclusion of the opposition in ceasefire monitoring would help in achieving lasting peace in the country.

“This workshop, conducted in collaboration with the ceasefire monitoring mechanism, follows the political agreement already signed by the parties in July 2021 in Rome,” read the statement.

“It was agreed that opposition groups will be fully included in all structures of the ceasefire monitoring mechanism by the end of March 2022. The inclusion of these groups is a necessary step to ensure full compliance with the Agreement on the cessation of hostilities and is essential to bring peace to the country.”

The talks were halted by President Salva Kiir Mayardit following the killing of two Catholic nuns along Juba-Nimule Highway. However, the perpetrators remain at large as the blames are weighed on the National Salvation Front led by Thomas Cirilo.

President Kiir called for the resumption of the talks at the Governors’ Forum last month but still said that the holdout groups were not bound to make peace a success.

Willing

The South Sudan United Front/Army (SSUF/A) Deputy Chief of General Staff for Training and Research Daniel Mach last month said his party and Real SPLM led by Pagan Amum were willing for the talks.

Mach said that they were only waiting for the official communication for the date of resumption from Sant’Egidio community.

He added that it was the National Salvation Front (NAS) of Thomas Cirilo which was not willing for negotiations due to their claim that peace was not legitimate.

“They do not believe the peace is legitimate,” he said, adding that SSUF/A would only decline to participate if the venue of the negotiation was shifted to Juba.

“We are waiting for the official date to resume talks. The NAS (of Thomas Cirilo) has refused the talks, but our group is ready to go back to the negotiation table,” he reiterated.

Media reports further reveal that the Secretary-General of Sant’Egidio Paolo Impagliazzo and the Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) had promised the above workshop as a preparation for talks to resume in January 2022.

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