| JUBA, March 10
JUBA, March 10 South Sudan's President Salva
Kiir said on Friday he had pardoned two senior government
officials and promised to release other political prisoners, as
his rule faces surging resistance, warfare and famine.
"I did not come to speak politics. I have come to pardon
Gen. Elias Waya and Gen. Andrea Dominic,” Kiir said at a
gathering in the capital Juba.
"Any other political detainees, I will release them all
tomorrow and the day after tomorrow.”
Waya is a former governor of Wau state in the country's
northwest and Dominic was his deputy. They were arrested in June
2016 and have since been detained at a military facility in
Juba. Officials have never given a reason for their detention.
South Sudan, Africa's youngest nation, was first plunged
into war in December 2013 when a power struggle between Kiir and
his then deputy Riek Machar turned into a military
The ensuing two-year conflict was ended by a peace pact in
August 2015. Nearly a year ago Machar returned to Juba and his
old post, but lingering animus between the two men, who hail
from rival tribes, exploded into fighting between their forces
again in Juba in June.
War and lawlessness have since uprooted an estimated three
million people and decimated the economy. Failed harvests in
traditional food basket areas have triggered famine in a country
rich in oil resources.
On Monday disaffected Lieutenant General Thomas Cirillo
Swaka accused Kiir of turning the country's military into a
"tribal army", launched a new rebel National Salvation Front and
vowed to topple him.
(Additional reporting by Hakim George; writing by Elias
Biryabarema; editing by Andrew Roche)