S. Sudan peace talks continue on truce

Updated: 2014-01-13 10:29


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S. Sudan peace talks continue on truce

South Sudan's Information Minister Michael Makuei Leuth, spokesperson of the South Sudanese government, addresses a news conference during South Sudan's negotiation talks in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, in this Jan 5, 2014 file photo. [Photo/Agencies]

ADDIS ABABA - The delegation of the South Sudanese government will continue to negotiate with the opposition side to resolve the crisis in Africa's newest state, Michael Makuei, South Sudanese Minister of Information and Broadcast, said on Sunday.

Under the mediation of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the two sides have continued the peace talks in Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia.

Makuei, who is also spokesperson of the government delegation to the peace talks, told the press that the South Sudanese government continues the peace negotiation without conditions.

He expressed optimism that the two sides would sign the cessation of hostilities in few days.

Makuei said IGAD envoys on Saturday held discussion with Reik Machar, the former South Sudanese vice president.

"Yesterday, the special envoys went to visit Reik Machar in his place inside South Sudan. They went to discuss with him issues of concern and special issues that are the main obstacle to the signing of the cessation of hostilities," he stated.

He said those in the opposition side condition it on the release of detainees.

The minister said the release of detainees, who have allegedly been involved in the reportedly attempted coup, should not be a condition for the negotiation.

"We will continue to negotiate, the mediators or the envoys will continue, and we are optimistic that we will be signing this agreement within the coming few days," he noted.

The minister also said, "We have fully controlled the whole of Unity State. We have recovered the oil installations even though they were badly destroyed. This is very unfortunate. We have recovered them all. They have destroyed whatever facilities that are there including the hospital, which was recently built. They have done a massive destruction. Nevertheless, we have pushed them out."

Responding to a question on Jonglei, he said, "The military situation in Jonglei, I have no knowledge about it but our forces are moving that direction."