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Monday, Sep 22nd, 2014

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Rebels’ delegation visits China as fighting resumes

Addis Ababa, September 21, 2014 (SSNA) -- South Sudanese rebels have sent an advance team to China for what they called an early procedure designed to prepare the ground for their leader expected trip to China in the near future.

The visit happens more than nine months after fighting erupted in Juba late last year.

The Official Spokesperson for the top leadership of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A-in Opposition), James Gatdet Dak, has on September 20, 2014, released a press statement announcing the visit.

“SPLM/SPLA Delegation Heads to China, our delegation of SPLM/SPLA led by the Chairman of External Relations Committee Dr Dhieu  Mathok Diing has left Addis Ababa for Beijing on Saturday evening”, Dak said.

The rebels’ team also includes Hussein Mar Nyuot, the Chairperson for Humanitarian Committee, Dr. Richard K Mulla, the Chairperson for Justice and Human Rights Committee, among others.

The Spokesperson also revealed that Chinese government has invited the leader of the SPLM-in Opposition, Dr. Riek Machar, and that Machar will meet the leadership of the communist nation, China.

“The main purpose of the visit is to prepare the ground for an expected visit of our Chairman, Dr Riek Machar Teny, who has been invited to Beijing to meet the Chinese top leadership. They will hold bilateral talks with officials of the Peoples Republic of China and try to forge mutual understanding”, Mr. Dak added.

South Sudan’s rebels have on many occasions accused the Chinese government of supplying South Sudanese government with deadly weapons.

Heavy fighting has resumed in the oil-rich Upper Nile State with both sides accusing the other of ceasefire infringements.

Peace talks between the warring sides have been continuing in Ethiopia; the negotiations lead to little or no success with fighting still raging.

South Sudan News Agency’s Editor Denies Working for the Government, Calls the Report ‘Dubious’

September 11, 2014 (SSNA) -- The Editor-in-Chief of the South Sudan News Agency (SSNA), Duop Chak Wuol, has denied a media report that he was one of the fourteen (14) Nuer employees of a Chinese oil company who were recently sacked by the government of South Sudan.

The report also emphasized that the expulsed employees have links with the South Sudanese rebels.

Earlier this week, a news report by the Sudan Tribune (ST) claimed that Wuol was an employee of China’s Greater Pioneer Operating Company (GPOC) and that he was dismissed along with other staff members, citing unspecified links with the rebels.

In his response to the narrative of removal, Mr. Wuol says the media report is a misinformation, describing it as dubious and faulty.

“Here is the truth: I am the editor-in-chief of the South Sudan News Agency (http://www.southsudannewsagency.com/) and I have never worked for South Sudan’s government, let alone the GPOC!.”, Mr. Wuol wrote on his social media page.

“Concisely, the Sudan Tribune’s news story is unjustified, flawed, and lacks logical grounds”, he observed.

The ST also published a statement which it attributed to the SSNA’s editor, Wuol. He denied knowledge of a formal interview.

“…the ST took one of my quotes from the internet and used it to make it appear as if I was quoted during the interview”, he continued.

“It is astonishing to see I believe idiom at the beginning of my original quote, in fact the statement published by the ST is a statement I said more than a year ago, there is nothing new about it, except the first eight letters”, Wuol told the SSNA.

“In the political dictionary of South Sudan’s government, any critical observation of government's policies, actions, or the current conflict is defined as an anti-government stance; it is as simple as that”, he added.

Wuol, who is the current editor-in-chief of the US-based news agency, the South Sudan News Agency, has never worked for the government of South Sudan. The news of his alleged removal from the China-based oil giant, GPOC, sparked heated debates among South Sudanese and raise questions whether or not “ghost employees” exist on government payroll schemes.

SPLM-in Opposition wants to participate in the IGAD-led South Sudan summit, protests against lack of inclusion

Addis Ababa, August 14, 2014 (SSNA) -- The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) will hold a summit on South Sudan later this week in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. The meeting is expected to discuss challenges surrounding the ongoing peace talks.

All IGAD member States are anticipated to attend the conference on Sunday.

However, South Sudanese rebels are not happy about the arrangement and launched a protest against what they described as 'lack of inclusion', warning that such a practice could cause or bring an unwanted attention into a much-needed peace.

James Gatdet Dak, the Spokesperson for the Chairman of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-in opposition, released a statement saying that the SPLM-in opposition is concerned about what appears to be an omission plan, adding that they [Members of the SPLM-O] want to participate in the upcoming forum so that they can tell their side of the story.

“The leadership of SPLM/SPLA [in opposition] reiterates the need to participate in IGAD Summits which discuss the situation in South Sudan. It is unfortunate that IGAD passes resolutions in favour of one party because SPLM/SPLA is not provided with an opportunity to tell our side of the story”, Mr. Dak said in the statement.

Dak also wonders as to why they have not receive any response from the IGAD regarding their request which he said was formally sent to the regional body, IGAD.

“As I write this press release SPLM/SPLA leadership has not received any official communication from IGAD about the expected Summit on Sunday despite the fact that a request was earlier made to the regional body to consider our participation”, he added.

The Official Spokesperson for the Chairman of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement urges the IGAD to allow the SPLM-in opposition to be part of the meeting so that they can have “an informed decision on the situation in South Sudan”.

Peace talks between South Sudan’s warring factions have been continuing in Ethiopia with little or no success.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed, at least one million South Sudanese have fled their homes, and hundreds of thousands of people have fled to the neighboring countries, according to the recent United Nations (UN) estimates.

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