South Sudan: Egypt Says to Fund Kiir’s National Dialogue

Egypt is providing “political, moral, financial, technical and material support” to South Sudan national dialogue, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukri said Monday.

Shoukri said during a one-day visit to Juba that President Abdel Fattah El Sisi assured President Salva Kiir of political and technical support in a personal message he carried from Cairo.

“I had the honor of delivering a written message to his excellency (Kiir) from his brother President El Sisi’s. A message of solidarity and continued Egyptian commitment to South Sudan’s security and stability” he said.

Shoukri donated over 50 computers and and printers to national dialogue steering committee in Juba and assured the group of other material and financial support to expedite the program.

Kiir launched the national dialogue project last year as a measure to rally the ethnically divided young nation along peace and reconciliation.

In his message during the swearing of the  94-member steering committee, Kiir said “everybody is welcome to participate in the national dialogue, except (his rival) Riek Machar”.

“Riek Machar will come and cause another war in Juba. But if he has a delegation of people he can trust, let him appoint these people to come to Juba,” Kiir said.

South Sudan’s war began in December 2013, pitting troops loyal to Kiir, an ethnic Dinka, against rebels led by former Vice President Riek Machar, an ethnic Nuer, in fighting that often falls along ethnic lines.

Tens of thousands have been killed in the past four years, and more than two million people have fled the country for neighboring Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo and other countries, the largest national exodus in Africa in 20 years.