Bishops hopeful that peace will break out in the Sudan

The Episcopal Church in South Sudan is cautiously optimistic the 26 Aug 2015 peace deal signed last week by President Salva Kiir may end the two year old civil war in Africa’s newest nation. On 27 Aug 2015 the Bishop of Rejaf in South Sudan’s Equatoria Province, the Rt Rev Enock Tombe, told Radio Tamazuj he hoped the deal would hold. The deal calls for a cessation of hostilities within 72 hours and bringing rebel leaders into the government. Rebel leader Riek Machar is to return to office as Vice President while rebels will be given charge of the governments in three key states: Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity. The capital, Juba, is to be demilitarized will all military forces kept 25 kilometers from the city. Bishop Tombe, who led the church’s delegation to the peace talks in Addis Abba, said: “As a church we welcomed and congratulated the president of the republic for signing the peace to end this devastating war. We have to move away from bitterness and change our hearts and minds to focus and prepare them for forgiveness and peaceful coexistence.” He added: “The time has come for South Sudanese to work together as they look forward to rebuilding what has been left by the war. As the church we pledge our support to the government and the people for immediate implementation of this agreement. We are confident that all these differences and fears will be overcome if we collectively take responsibility to rebuild our lives and the nation as one people and as children of God regardless of where we come, tribe or gender. We will overcome these challenges that we are currently faced with. We need to pray hard so that we switch from hatred to peace as we continue to seek true justice for those who have been lost in the conflict with fairness,” the bishop said.

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