South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir’s Term Extended by Three Years

East Africa  |  03.25.15   By admin


According to the Associated Press, Members of Parliament in South Sudan voted to extend President Salva Kiir’s Presidential term by 3 years along with their own mandate.  The Government insists that the move was necessary for stability amid a civil war between supporters of President Kiirs and his former vice president, Riek Machar.  The opposition is highly critical of the extension saying it provides for a stronger hold on Power for the current President.  

This move is likely to cause more tensions in South Sudan.  Peace talks between Kiir and Machar have repeatedly failed.  South Sudan has seen sporadic fighting since December 2013 as government forces loyal to Kiir, a member of the dominant Dinka ethnic group, try to put down rebels led by Machar, who is of Nuer ethnicity. The fighting has often been along ethnic lines.

Machar had been Kiir’s deputy until July 2013 when he was fired amid a power struggle in the country’s ruling party. It is widely believed that the political rivalry between Kiir and Machar fueled the current conflict in South Sudan — the reason many international observers and diplomats say a political solution is needed to bring peace to the country.

South Sudan was the worlds newest nation when it gained independance from Sudan in 2011.

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