South Sudanese opposition leaders form coalition group

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Leaders from nine opposition groups in South Sudan have formed a coalition group in a bid to accelerate the country’s struggling peace process.

Speaking to VOA, Kwaje Lasu, secretary-general of the South Sudan National Movement for Change, confirmed that the coalition has been formed with the intention of healing divides between the various opposition groups in South Sudan. However, the alliance doesn’t include the country’s main armed opposition group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO), or the SPLM Former Detainees (SPLM-FD).

South Sudan opposition groups unite

The new coalition, which is calling itself The South Sudan Opposition Alliance, comprises of nine existing opposition groups in South Sudan: the Federal Democratic Party, National Salvation Front, National Democratic Movement, People’s Democratic Movement, South Sudan Liberation Movement, South Sudan National Movement for Change, South Sudan Patriotic Movement, South Sudan United Movement and United Democratic Alliance.

Kwaje Lasu says the coalition will unite the groups for the next round of peace talks mediated by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), which are scheduled for March.

“We in opposition believe that the unity of the opposition is paramount to address the issues that brought the country to the crisis, and since High [Level] Revitalization Forum 2, we have been working together collectively as a unified opposition addressing the issues of the country,” Lasu told VOA.

“It is an opportunity for us to cultivate our efforts and work together in a concerted mechanism to address the issues,” he said.

Featured image: “South Sudan General” flickr photo by EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid https://flickr.com/photos/eu_echo/7499859568 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.