Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


South Sudan to suspend attacks

08 May 2014, 06:51

Addis Ababa - South Sudan's government said on Wednesday it had ordered a one-month suspension of attacks on rebel forces as international pressure mounts for an end to an ethnic conflict that has raised fears of genocide.

South Sudanese Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth said the government's commitment to honour a "month of tranquillity", proposed on Monday at peace talks in Ethiopia, meant the army could still fight back if attacked.

There was no immediate word from the rebels.

"We have already given our forces an order," Lueth told a news conference in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, where months of peace talks have made little progress.

A ceasefire deal struck in January swiftly fell apart, with each side blaming the other for fighting that has exacerbated deep-rooted tensions between President Salva Kiir's Dinka people and the Nuer tribe of his sacked deputy president, Riek Machar. The conflict has largely followed ethnic faultlines.

Kiir and Machar are due to hold face-to-face talks in Addis Ababa on Friday.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said in Juba last week that Kiir had committed himself to talks on a transitional government, and has threatened Machar with sanctions if he does not meet Kiir.

South Sudanese Foreign Minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin told Reuters on Wednesday that the plan envisaged a "transitional process" that would last until the next election in 2015.

"President Kiir will stay in power until the elections take place," he said.

Machar has called for Kiir to resign, saying he lost the people's trust after fighting broke out in the presidential guard in December and quickly spread across the country, which is about the size of Texas.


Thousands of civilians have been killed, and hundreds of thousands have fled their homes.

In a sign of growing frustration at the failure of South Sudan's leaders to end the bloodshed, the United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on two commanders on opposing sides of the ethnic violence.

The sanctions were imposed under an executive order that US President Barack Obama signed in April to hold to account those responsible for the unrest in South Sudan - whose secession from Sudan in 2011 was seen as a major US policy success.

Norway, another of South Sudan's main Western sponsors and donors, also made clear that its patience was running out.

"We made it clear that the international community will react even firmer in the coming months if they don't take responsibility in ending the fighting and find a solution for an inclusive government for the future," Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Bende told Reuters in Addis Ababa.

Benjamin said in Juba that he had understood from Kerry that the regional African group IGAD, which is sponsoring the peace talks, would take the lead on any foreign sanctions.

"We were surprised that the United States pre-empted what they had agreed upon," he said, although he added that he doubted relations with Washington would be damaged.

The sanctions targeted Peter Gadet, an army commander loyal to Machar, and Major-General Marial Chanuong, head of Kiir's presidential guard. One US official said both men had "blood on their hands".

- Reuters


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...