South Sudan has experienced political developments including conflicts within the SPLM/A-IO led by First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar who was deposed by his army generals and replaced by his former chief of staff Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual. Machar quickly responded by saying he was in full control of the party and its military wing. However, over the weekend, troops loyal to Machar and Gatwech clashed in the Magenis area of Upper Nile State. Tensions remain high in the area.
The IGAD council of ministers in its 73rd extra-ordinary session earlier this week through video conference, deeply expressed their concerns with the recent conflicts within the SPLM/A-IO that led to an armed confrontation resulting to loss of life, destruction of property, and displacement of civilians in Upper Nile State in South Sudan.
A paper position issued by IGAD stated that the council noted with concern that the unfolding political crisis and splintering of the SPLM/A-IO describing it as a magnitude beyond an intra-party crisis that bears a significant immediate and long-term implications on the broader security and humanitarian situation as well as the ongoing Peace Process in the Republic of South Sudan and the wider IGAD region.
The council however called upon all rival factions in the dispute within SPLM/A-IO to immediately and unconditionally cease armed confrontation and refrain from any offensive, provocative or retaliatory utterances, behaviors, and other actions that will escalate tensions and hostilities in the Upper Nile state.
The situation is also being monitored and an on ground investigation has commenced to establish the true facts that led to the deadly clashes and the investigation team will report back to the IGAD Council of ministers chaired by Dr. Mariam Al-Sadig Al-Mahdi, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Sudan within 7 days.
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