AUTHOR: Daniel Garang Deng | PUBLISHED: April 22, 2023
Archive photo President Kiir during National Dialogue conference in Juba
South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, who is leading the IGAD team for Sudan peace talks, has expressed fears – saying he cannot enter Khartoum where “bullets are still flying”.
While addressing Muslim community on Thursday in Juba during the annual Ramadan breakfast, Kiir said he can lead his colleagues to Sudan if the shooting stop.
“I am supposed to lead the team, but we could not make it as we had planned because the two guys keep violating the ceasefire,” Kiir said. “What miracle can we do to land in a place where bullets are flying even at the country’s airport?”
On April 17, the IGAD heads of state agreed to send Kiir, Kenyan President William Ruto, and Djibouti President Ismail Omar to Sudan to mediate a peace process between the warring parties of Sudan army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, who commands the Rapid Support Forces in Khartoum.
However, since then, the team could not go to Khartoum due to the escalation of the fighting.
“We are now waiting for the green light from Khartoum to tell us that there is no sound of gunshot in Khartoum and any plane can land at Khartoum International airport,” Kiir stated. “If they say ‘come’, I’m ready to go.”
Since it broke out on April 16, the fighting in Khartoum has reportedly claimed more than 300 lives and the fighting is still ongoing despites the announcement of 72 hours ceasefire by the united nations.
President Kiir reiterated his call on the parties to cease hostilities and seek peaceful means through dialogue.