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Gen. Taban Deng Gai Orders Armed Groups In Equatoria To Join Cantonment Sites


By Dach Agoth Mayen


The First vice president Taban Deng Gai on Saturday has ordered armed groups operating in greater Equatoria region to lay down their arms and join cantonment sites to enhance speedy implementation of peace pact.


FVP Gai remarks came while addressing youth gathering organized by national youth union to celebrate the formation of unity government, transitional parliament over the weekend at Nyakuron Cultural Center.  

“The new sites will help to speedy the integration of the two armies and we are committed to integrate our SPLA-IO forces to form one army come May 2017,” Gen. Gai told the youth gathering. Last Month President Salva Kiir ordered integration of Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO) and equally directed SPLA joint Military high command to allow the establishment of cantonment areas as a way to pave smooth implementation of shaky peace agreement, inked year ago.

“These new cantonments sites are meant for peace not like the previous ones established by former first vice president Dr. Riek Machar based on his political reasons,” he stressed. Gai reiterated his commitment to implement peace accord, adding that the cantonment areas agreed upon by the parties in Equatoria region will promote peace in the country. Political analysts say the previous controversial stall talks between then FVP Riek Machar and president Kiir groups culminated into the July fighting that now shakes peace accord. Former rebel chief negotiator turned FVP, called upon rebels in the foresaid regions to lay down their arms and join cantonment sites in pursuit  for peace and denounce hostile activities in the area.  He further underscored that the names and location of the cantonment areas would soon be disclosed as soon as the military commanders deliberated on it and come up with practical necessary arrangements.  

However, clashes along routes connecting Juba to Yei and Juba to Nimule raised eyebrows on what holds in the basket for the young nation.

Since then the key roads linking the country into neighboring East Africa countries have witnessed heinous targeted killing of civilians along the highways, which includes the recent setting ablaze of five oil tankers along Juba-Nimule road.

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