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South Sudan’s Machar to meet president, discuss stalled peace deal

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Officials on Monday reported that former South Sudanese rebel leader, Riek Machar will visit President Salva Kiir, to discuss possible ways to move the country’s stalled peace deal forward.

Machar’s director for information, Puok Baluang, said the meeting aims at discussing the outstanding issues related to the implementation of the R-ARCSS (peace deal) with President Kiir.

He said that the visit will be for two days and expects heads of other parties who signed the agreement to be present.

The two men signed the pact to end the civil war that has killed thousands of people, displaced a third of the population and wrecked the economy.

However, the deal was delayed because the government says it does not have enough money to fund disarmament and the integration of all the armed factions.

South Sudan split away from Sudan in 2011 after decades of war but plunged into its own conflict in 2013 after Kiir sacked Machar as vice president.

Troops loyal to both men clashed in the capital and ethnically charged fighting spread across the state, shutting down oil fields, forcing millions to flee and killing thousands of people.

Both sides signed a peace deal in September 2018, under pressure from international and regional powers.

Machar who lives in Khartoum, returned to Juba just once in October 2018, to celebrate the peace deal.

A key provision of the peace deal is integration of former rebels into the national army, which has still not occurred. (Reuters/NAN)

HLM/MZA

Edited by Hadiza Mohammed/Maharazu Ahmed