Friday, July 24, 2015

South Sudanese Rebel Leader Wants Uganda Investigated Over War
July 24, 2015 (ADDIS ABABA) – South Sudanese former vice president, Riek Machar, and leader of the armed opposition faction (SPLM-IO), has called on the international community to investigate Ugandan government over its direct involvement in the ongoing 19-month long civil war in the country.

In a statement on Friday, a copy of which was extended to Sudan Tribune, Machar objected to inclusion of Uganda in a committee formed on Friday in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, by the African Union’s (AU) Peace and Security Council (PSC) to study final report on atrocities committed in South Sudan.

AU’s PSC met on Friday and discussed the report on crimes committed by the warring parties in South Sudan. President Salva Kiir’s government participated in the discussions on the document which copy the government received earlier.

Also a committee of 7 members was formed to study the document. Among the committee membership include Algeria, Chad, Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda.

However, the rebel leader said Uganda should be removed from the committee, saying it is a party to the conflict.

“SPLM/SPLA strongly objects to the inclusion of Uganda in the committee. Uganda has been a party to the conflict from since the beginning (15th December 2013),” partly reads the statement, dated 24 July, and signed by the top rebel leader.

“Therefore, the inclusion of the Republic of Uganda in the committee is tantamount to making her a judge in its own case,” he said.

Machar said the Ugandan People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) were still in the country fighting alongside president Kiir’s forces in carrying out “genocide” against the civil population.

He also reiterated protest of the opposition group not having been invited to the PSC meeting on Friday and for not being served with a copy of the report on the atrocities.

The top opposition leader also decried conditioning the expected summit of AU’s heads of state and government to discuss the report on the IGAD member states agreeing to its convening.

“We view this as a subversion of justice,” he said.

He called on the AU’s Peace and Security Council to serve the opposition faction with the copy of the report and to be invited to the upcoming summit where the report shall be discussed.


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