IGAD postpones South Sudan peace talks, cites “shuttle diplomacy”

Photo: VOA

Addis Ababa, April 26, 2018 (SSNA) — The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) has postponed South Sudan’s peace revitalization negotiations, saying there still “wide gaps” between parties to the conflict and that it wants to “narrow” the gaps before next round of talks begin.

“On 25th April 2018, the Office of the Chairperson of IGAD Council of Ministers met with IGAD Ambassadors in Addis Ababa and after deliberation and assessing the positions of the Parties decided to postpone the convening of Phase II of the High-level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) process for South Sudan,” a statement said.

The East African regional asserted in the text that it will continue with “shuttle diplomacy meetings” with the Parties to the South Sudan conflict” in hope to come up with a good outcome.

This is not the first IGAD postponed peace talks. The negotiations were initially scheduled to resume on March 26, but IGAD changed the date to April 26. Again, the bloc also changed the date from April 26 to May 2, then from May 2 to May 3. The bloc now said it decided to move the talks to May 17.

A senior rebel official branded the repeated changes of dates a “stalling tactic” without elaborating.

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