The Ethiopian Prime Minister, who is also chairperson of the regional bloc (IGAD), Hailemariam Desalegn met on Sunday with the United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon and discussed South Sudan’s recent crisis. The two met at margins of the 27th African Union summit held in Kigali, Rwanda. The two sides expressed concern over the resurgence of the conflict in South Sudan and said upsurge in further fighting was “intolerable”.
“The Secretary-General and the Prime Minister expressed alarm at the situation in South Sudan and the risk of further escalation, with far-reaching consequences for the country and its people, as well as for the region,” read a statement Sudan Tribune obtained. Last week’s fresh hostilities in the world’s youngest nation reportedly left about 300 people dead after days of fighting between troops loyal to President Salva Kiir and First Vice-President, Riek Machar.
Machar who fled the capital Juba on Monday following the major outbreak of the deadly violence has urged the UN to establish “buffer zone” between his forces and those of the government. A ceasefire unilaterally declared on Tuesday last week has held. But situations remain tense and there is potential for eruption of violence. The UN chief and the Ethiopian Prime Minister said South Sudan’s rival leaders should play leading roles in urgently resolving the latest crisis.
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