President Kiir Declares State of Emergency in Unity and Jonglei States

Juba, January 1, 2014 (SSNA) — South Sudanese president Salva kiir Mayardiit has on Wednesday declared a ‘state of emergency’ for Jonglei and Unity states.

Both states are currently under the control of the rebel forces.

"President Kiir has declared a state of emergency for Unity and Jonglei states #SouthSudan”, the government announces on its official Twitter account.

Kiir’s statement comes hours before peace talks begin in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

Bor, the capital of Jonglei state was seized this Tuesday by forces loyal to South Sudan’s former Vice President Riek Machar.

Meanwhile, the rebels have described the declaration as a “desperate move”.

“The declaration of the so called state of emergency is a desperate move by desperate president [Kiir]”, a statement signed by the Information Department of the rebel forces reads in part.

“What difference does it makes?”, the statement asks.

Both Kiir and Machar have sent negotiating teams to Ethiopia to try to find a peaceful solution to the crisis.

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