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Public applauds Kiir-Riek meeting

Author: Emmanuel Akile | Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2019

SPLM-IO Leader, Dr. Riek Machar and President Salva Kiir. File photo/Eye Radio.

Some members of the public have applauded the Kiir-Riek meeting, saying it should encourage hold-out groups to join the peace process.

SPLM Leader Dr. Riek Machar returned to Juba yesterday to hold talks with President Salva Kiir.

The meeting, which observers consider a significant step towards the implementation of a pre-transition period to a unity government, is revolving around the security issues.

These include cantonment, training and unification of the forces.

Reacting to the close-door meeting, some members of the public say “the meeting is a good step”.

“The visit of Dr. Riek to Juba shows that he is serious about peace. Let them be serious people are tired, people need peace. That is what we want here in South Sudan,” Joseph Deng told Eye Radio’s Dawn breakfast show.

“It’s the kind of step that we need here in South Sudan. If they put the security arrangements as priority and is conducted in a good way, then the rest of the things will follow smoothly.”

The meeting comes month after the international community, particularly US and UK appealed to the principals to “keep talking to each other”, saying waiting for November without engagement in the pre-transitional period activities was not okay.

“I see it as a good step and it is a step that we as citizens want in South Sudan. If the security provisions are implemented in a good way, then the rest can be implemented very fast,” said another caller.

“The presence of Riek in Juba is a good step. And everyone accepts that. I was one of the people who wanted them to meet every month after the signing of the revitalized peace agreement.”

The parties inked the revitalized peace agreement in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, in September 2018. The leaders are expected to set up the new interim government on 12 November.

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