Peace, first priority for the return of Machar – UN
David Shearer the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General
By: Kitab A Unango
The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General David Shearer said peace was the first priority for the return of Riek Machar and the parties to South Sudan.
“We discussed the coming back of Riek Machar in our meeting with the President on Wednesday last week. I think what needs to come first is a peace agreement.”
We need to have an agreement by which others at play, if they want to come back into the country, then that has to be under those auspices and that will happen,” said Shearer.
Recently the President of the Republic Salva Kiir issued a statement calling upon his rivalry the former first vice president Dr. Riek Machar to come back to the country and promised he would grantee his safety.
However, the top UN official said he was not sure of Machar’s coming to the country.
“There have been lots of different accounts on whether Riek Machar will come back. I don’t have any confirmation about that. I think there have been discussions outside of South Sudan whether and how he will come back, and under what protection”, the statement read in part.
Shearer was speaking during a Press Conference on 10th May 2018 at UN Tomping Base.
In his press statement Shearer asserted that the HLRF will take place next week and UNMISS team will attend the forum to support the process.
“As you’ll be aware, the High Level Revitalization Forum will convene again next week, bringing together all the parties to discuss the path towards peace in South Sudan. UNMISS will have a team at the talks to support the process because we believe very strongly that this forum is critical to achieving genuine, inclusive and lasting peace”, he said.
Riek Machar fled the country in July 2016 after his body guards clashed with the presidential guards in JI since then Riek has been a guest in South Africa under.
Recently this year the IGAD council of ministers said they would relocate Riek to any African country of his choice outside IGAD member countries not bordering South Sudan.