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South Sudan to set up Commission to unite and heal citizens

South Sudan

South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and first vice president Riek Machar, said on Tuesday, they are planning on establishing a Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).

In a joint news article published in The New York Times, the two said unity in the conflict torn north-eastern African country can only be guaranteed through an internationally-backed commission.

“Disciplinary justice – even if delivered under international law – would destabilise efforts to unite our nation by keeping alive anger and hatred among the people of South Sudan,” they said.

What #southsudan needs is reconciliation & forgiveness, in the persuit of Justice we must not forget that peace is paramount. #letusheal

— Deng Gai (@dTdengGai) June 8, 2016

The country erupted into civil war some three years ago, when Kiir accused Machar of plotting a coup and sacked him as vice president.

Since then, the country has seen a series of retaliatory killings that have divided the country along ethnic lines.

Although it is unclear when the commission would be set up, the two leaders said the commission would adopt the South Africa and Northern Ireland – style.

South Africa’s reconciliation commission – which the Northern Ireland sources inspiration from- was a court-like restorative body set up at the end of apartheid.

The victims and witnesses of human rights violations would give statements in a public hearing set-up. Perpetrators could also volunteer to give testimony and request amnesty from prosecution.

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