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JUBA - 7 Nov 2018

Govt, rebel forces agree to allow free movement of people and goods

Government military officials and a section of the opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO) led by Riek Machar met in Rokon, in the outskirts of Juba over the weekend and agreed to allow humanitarian access, and facilitate free movement of people and goods.

Brigadier General Chol Deng Chol, Deputy Commando commander and Colonel David Mayen Malual, head of the Civil-Military relations affairs represented the army during the meeting attended by the local government officers from Jubek and Terekeka states.

Colonel Mayen told Radio Tamazuj on Tuesday that the meeting was cordial saying they discussed issues related to cooperation, allowing free movement of goods, services, and people as well as opening humanitarian corridors.

“This means that all roads from north of Juba to Terekeka, Mundri and to Lainya will be opened for movement. It was agreed that there will be no detention or checking unless a person is carrying a gun and wearing a uniform,” he said.

According to Mayen, the rival forces also agreed that criminal activities occurring in the jurisdiction of either party will be the responsibility of that party.

For his part, SPLA I-O Deputy Military Spokesperson Colonel Lam Paul Gabriel said his team was led by Brigadier General Warnyang Laku Buyu together with Colonel Peter Gatluit Nyuot, Colonel John Wiyual and Colonel Charles Jada Augustino.

Paul said the meeting is a first step in building trust and confidence between the two warring forces, stressing that they are committed to the implementation of the revitalized agreement signed in September.

In related developments, Lam Paul said opposition and government representatives will meet in Yei River State on Thursday to discuss security arrangements in the area under the auspices of CTSAMM, a body mandated to monitor and verify the implementation of the Agreement on the Cessation of Hostilities as per the peace deal.

He claimed that calm has now been restored in Yei, despite the continuation of clashes between government troops and rebel forces in the region since the September agreement was signed.