Pretoria/Addis Ababa, June 8, 2018 (SSNA) — South Sudanese rebel leader Dr. Riek Machar is expected to travel to Kenya after his meeting with his arch-rival President Salva Kiir in Khartoum, a rebel source who has complete knowledge of discussion between Machar and Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga in South Africa told the South Sudan News Agency (SSNA) on Friday.
The source, who declined to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the media stated that Odinga met with Machar for many hours and that Odinga also talked to Kiir on the phone about the meeting.
“Odinga discussed many peace-related issues with Dr. Machar today. Machar agreed to meet Kiir in Khartoum and have a face-to-face meeting,” the source said.
The rebel official also criticizes the government for what he described as “desperate attempt to lure Machar to Juba.”
“We have a Kenyan leader trying to convince Machar and Kiir to work together while some government officials in Juba are calling for Machar to denounce violence as if he is the one who caused the civil war,” the official explained.
The official also warned that peace between Machar and Kiir is too far from reality, warning, “If Kiir does not identify his government officials who are in part responsible for the continuation of the conflict, then there is no peace.”
“We [rebel officials] were laughing when we were informed that Kiir wants Machar to go to Juba as soon as they meet in Khartoum,” the source revealed.
A senior armed opposition official in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, disclosed to the South Sudan News Agency that the rebel leadership is closely monitoring Machar-Odinga’s meeting.