Western diplomats in South Sudan say they will not attend a meeting convened by President Salva Kiir to discuss a roadmap to implement the country’s peace agreement.
South Sudan’s foreign affairs ministry on Wednesday sent invitations to all diplomatic missions, regional and international non-governmental organisations accredited to South Sudan to attend the Thursday event that will be presided by the president.
The meeting was to be attended by First Vice-President Riek Machar and the other four vice-presidents and political parties who are signatories to the revitalised peace deal.
The event would present “the roadmap for the implementation of pending tasks in the agreement,” a ministry statement said.
However, the heads of missions of the US, the UK and Norway – known as the Troika for South Sudan – wrote to President Kiir expressing regret that they would not attend.
“This is because we understand all the relevant parties to the [revitalised agreement] have not been included in consultations about the contents of the roadmap and an extension to the transitional period,” they said.
The diplomats said they had previously written to the president to express their profound concern that the consultations must include civil societies.
South Sudan’s leaders have been accused of not meeting key reform milestones of the agreement they signed in September 2018 to end five years of conflict.