Kenya urges East Africa not to host S. Sudan rebels

Kenya will not be used as launching pad for subversive activity against S. Sudan government, says envoy to Juba

Ekip   | 20.11.2017
Kenya urges East Africa not to host S. Sudan rebels FILE PHOTO


By Parach Mach

JUBA, South Sudan

The Kenyan ambassador to Juba on Monday called for diplomatic resistance to South Sudanese rebels and urged countries in the region not to host or provide military support to rebel groups -- a stance he suggests could help bring peace to the troubled eastern African nation.

“I want to assure the government and people of South Sudan, the region and the internal community that the government of Kenya will not allow Kenya to be used as a launching pad for any subversive activity against the government and people of South Sudan,” Ambassador Cleland Leshore said during a plenary meeting of stakeholders in the capital, Juba

He also called for a unified regional position to aid political developments in the country, noting that governments in the region held “significant influence” on political developments to end the four-year war.

South Sudan gained independence in 2011 but fell into a civil war in 2013, in which tens of thousands have been killed and nearly 4 million displaced.

A peace deal was signed between Kiir and Machar in August 2015 but fighting in the capital, Juba, in July 2016 deal in further turmoil.

Most senior South Sudanese opposition figures live in neighboring Inter Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) states. Juba has repeatedly accused IGAD of bias and vested interests in peace talks.

Kenya is a member of IGAD, which has been organizing peace talks in Addis Ababa to reconcile the Juba government and rebels aligned to South Sudanese Vice President Riek Machar.

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