(JUBA) – The head of the Church of South Sudan’s internal Central Province, Archbishop Paul Yugusuk has urged the rival parties involved in the country’s ongoing civil war to declare an end to violence before the next round of peace talks commence.
The next phase of the talks, mediated by the regional bloc (IGAD) is expected to take place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 26-30 April.
During the last negotiations, which stalled, the parties involved in the high level revitalization forum, discussed formation of a transitional government, permanent ceasefire and other security arrangements.
Archbishop Yugusuk said all parties must conclude with signing a peace deal during the upcoming round of talks in Addis Ababa.
“Our delegation is going to IGAD and as they go there and before they go there, let the government and opposition say it is finished,” said the Archbishop. “Let us bring everything to an end. We open a new page and let us come back home and live,” he added.
The retired Bishop of Rajaf, Enoch Tombe, who led the religious team for the peace talks in Addis Ababa, said the parties should take a people-centered approach during the next round of negotiations.
“If you are serious about peace, we should go with a new mindset,” said Bishop Tombe.
“We shouldn’t just continue business as usual – this is my position and that’s it. I think we have to be ready to compromise for the sake of the people, for the sake of this country and for ourselves,” he added.
Fighting between the warring parties have intensified in recent weeks, with each of the two sides accusing the other of renewing fighting ahead of the next round of peace talks to end the ongoing civil war due in the Ethiopian capital this month.
First published by Relief Web