Activist welcomes resumption of Rome peace talks

BY Wek Atak Kacjang

The Executive Director for Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) Edmond Yakani has welcomed calls for the resumption of the Rome peace initiative. Adding that the dialogue remains the only way to resolve political differences.

On Monday, President Salva Kiir has indicated that the intention of the government to resume Rome talks with holdout groups under umbrella of South Sudan Opposition Movement Alliance without any precondition.

Edmund Yakani, the Executive Director of CEPO said the president’s directive clearly showed political differences could no longer be resolved through guns.

“Dialogue remains the only option for a durable solution to political difference. This is embraced by many actors across the region and globally. CEPO appealed to South Sudan government and the opposition alliance members to fully utilize the Rome peace initiative to ensure that peace prevails. 

He further called on parties involved in talks mediated by the Community of Sant’ Egidio to focus on security, humanitarian, economic and governance issues. 

Last year, government and the opposition alliance signed the Rome Declaration agreement and committed to immediately cease hostilities.

The talks were expected to resume on 28th June 2021 but the SSOMA-Cirillo faction earlier in the month said it would boycott the talks if they did not get any security guarantees for their leaders in South Sudan’s neighboring countries, following the murder of one of their generals Abraham Wani in Kampala, Uganda. 

Earlier, government blamed the National Salvation Front one of the group under SSOMA of carrying out attack that led to the murder of two nuns and three other male persons while returning back to Juba from Centenary celebration of Loa Parish. The talks were suspended in August following rising militant attacks along highways.

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