September 4, 2017 (JUBA)- South Sudan President Salva Kiir said Sunday he was more concerned about the situation in the country but voiced his rejection of any peace agreement imposed from outside the country.
“There are people who come with conditions instead of coming to listen to us, to what we have done and how we intend to overcome the challenges and forward,” said President Kiir in a speech to religious leaders at his residence.
The South Sudanese leader said he was personally committed to ending the war in the country, stressing that one side alone would not stop the situation if there is no reciprocation of the same.
“I know that in order for any agreement to endure, peace cannot be imposed from the outside. It must be negotiated directly by the leaders who are required to make the hard choices and compromises that take on history," said Kiir.
"We are determined to stop this war, even without being threatened because these are our people and the country is ours," he emphasised.
The remarks come 24 hours after a meeting with the head of USAID, Mark Green who asked the South Sudanese president to stop the war and allow unfettered humanitarian access. The visiting American official said Kiir has denied that his forces are impeding the activities of aid groups.
“I told (Kiir) that in the next few weeks we are undertaking a complete review of our policy toward South Sudan,” said further Green in statements to Reuters, pointing that his discussions with Kiir were “cleared at the highest levels” in Washington.
However, in his meeting with the religious leaders, Kiir seemed unmoved by Green’s statements.
"We came out from a similar situation before and so I have a confidence we will also come out of this situation,” said Kiir.
Addressing his call to the opposition groups that refuse to join the national dialogue he initiated last year saying they have to stop war and join the internal political process
"And you in the church, you an important to play for peace to be realized," he added in his speech to the religious chiefs.
The head of state further urged the religious leaders to help his administration in preaching and disseminating the message of peace, reconciliation, forgiveness.
The Eastern Africa’s Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), which leads regional efforts to end the four-year conflict, last June called to revitalizes South Sudan peace process.
The initiative is an attempt to revive a dead peace agreement signed in August 2015. Juba says it is committed to the implementation of the deal but Machar and his opposition faction should not take part in this transitional phase and wait to participate in the elections.