Tanzania: Egypt Lauds SPLM Arusha Peace Accord

EGYPTIAN Ministry of Foreign Affairs has welcomed the peace agreement signed by three factions of the ruling Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) of South Sudan in Arusha, last week and commended Tanzania for spearheading the deal.

"The Arab Republic of Egypt encourages the South Sudan factions to continue the constructive dialogue between them to reach a comprehensive and lasting agreement to their dispute and to save the lives of millions of innocent people in that country.

"SPLM leaders should turn the page of disputes between brothers to regain stability and peace and enhance economic development and state building programmes," the ministry said in a statement availed to the 'Daily News' by the Egyptian Ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Hossam Moharram.

Last week, the three factions of SPLM inked the peace accord in Arusha after lengthy discussions held under the auspices of Tanzania's ruling party, CCM.

The talks and ultimately, the peace accord were aimed at reunifying the leaders of the factions and adopting a comprehensive plan to reform the SPLM to settle the crisis raging in South Sudan since December 2013.

"Egypt had participated in observing the Arusha meeting since it started to provide political support to the talks. We have as well been in contact with all South Sudan parties to encourage them to overcome the disputes and achieve the anticipated agreement.

"Our country was motivated by a belief that the first step to end the crisis would be by addressing the roots of disagreements within the SPLM," the statement read in part. It said the country was reaffirming its continuing support to all efforts to end the crisis as well as its readiness to assist all parties to achieve the goal.

The rival factions in South Sudan had previously continued to fight it out on the ground as the five previous ceasefire agreements signed over the course of 2014 were short-lived.

The talks in Tanzania under the CCM guidance were a parallel effort to kick-start peace negotiations brokered by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) regional bloc in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

Meanwhile, an Egyptian tourism organisation, Seyag, has organised a road trip from Egypt to Tanzania, passing through Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya.

The expedition, to involve 18 tourists on eight vehicles and three motorcycles, will run between February 6 and 28. The trip will be conducted under the auspices of the state owned Egyptian Tourism Development Authority.

The road trip is expected to market Tanzania's tourist attractions such as Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Zanzibar, among others.

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