South Sudan agrees to end hostilities
By The Associated Press
Published: Friday, Dec. 27, 2013, 7:00 p.m.
JUBA, South Sudan — South Sudan's government agreed Friday at a meeting of East African leaders to end hostilities against rebels accused of trying to overthrow the young country, but the cease-fire was thrown into doubt because the head of the rebellion was not invited.
An army spokesman suggested the fighting could go on despite the announcement by politicians in a faraway capital.
At the meeting in Kenya, South Sudan agreed not to carry out a planned offensive to recapture Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, which is controlled by troops loyal to Riek Machar, the former vice president vilified by the government as a corrupt coup plotter.
“We are not moving on Bentiu as long as the rebel forces abide by the cease-fire,” said Michael Makuei Lueth, South Sudan's information minister.
But no one representing Machar was at the Nairobi meeting — a move possibly meant to deny him any elevated status that could slow the search for peace. And Machar told the BBC that conditions for a truce were not yet in place.
In the field, the military reported no immediate changes in the battle for control of the world's newest country.
Said army spokesman Col. Philip Aguer: “We have not seen any sign of a cease-fire. There is no cease-fire agreed by the two sides,” an indication the planned assault on Bentiu could still take place.
Elsewhere, the country's military advanced on the rebel-held town of Malakal early Friday and had taken control of it by noon, Aguer said.
Violence erupted Dec. 15 in South Sudan's capital Juba and quickly spread across the country.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Western Pennsylvania engineer aboard missing Malaysia Airlines flight
- Ukrainian leader will meet Obama in U.S.
- Ukrainian leader will meet Obama in U.S.
- Syrian rebels reportedly release nuns held since December
- Toronto mayor’s staff in dark on daylight saving
- Suicide car bomb, attacks kill at least 42 in Iraq
- Israel: Iranian shipment contained 40 rockets
- Libya says its forces near oil tanker
- ‘Dead’ Mexican drug kingpin Moreno likely killed in shootout, official says
- Vietnam says it may have found missing jet’s door
- Eastern European military officers say security, economic ties blunt Russia’s war threat in Ukraine