Relief as South Sudan unveils new ministers

Relief as South Sudan unveils new ministers

A new cabinet has been announced in South Sudan – a key step in the peace process following years of civil war.

Three weeks ago President Salva Kiir and the former rebel leader Riek Machar agreed to form a government – and there had been some concern that disagreements over positions threatened the formation of the government of national unity.

President Kiir named Angelina Teny, the wife of Mr. Machar, as defense minister – making her the first woman to hold the position.

As the new cabinet was announced over state radio many South Sudanese felt a sense of relief.

Many had feared that a failure by the politicians to reach agreement would lead to renewed conflict.

At least 400,000 people died during the country’s six-year civil war.

When you consider how much bad blood that there has been between President Kiir and Mr. Machar, it is a significant development that they have now agreed on how to divide up the ministerial positions in this new government of national unity.

It has taken a great deal of international pressure to get to this point, and there will be some concern that the cabinet includes names that are on a US sanctions list for obstructing the peace process.

The big test now is whether or not they can work together, and build on a peace agreement which at times has looked extremely fragile.

Source: BBC

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