, JUBA, Jan 6 – Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir arrived in the South Sudanese capital Juba on Monday for a day of talks on the country’s three-week-old unrest, an AFP correspondent said.
Bashir was greeted at Juba airport by South Sudan’s Vice President James Wani Igga, before heading to the presidential palace for talks with his counterpart President Salva Kiir.
Bashir made no public comment upon arriving, although Khartoum on Sunday reaffirmed Sudan’s wish to see “a continuation of the political process aimed at finding a peaceful resolution to the conflict in South Sudan”.
Sudan’s foreign ministry also underlined Sudan’s willingness “to offer everything in its power to ensure success of the initiative by IGAD”, the East African regional bloc brokering the talks.
The conflict erupted on December 15, pitting army units loyal to President Kiir against a loose alliance of ethnic militia forces and mutinous army commanders nominally headed by Riek Machar, a former vice president who was sacked in July.
South Sudan won independence from Khartoum in 2011 after decades of war, but is dependent on Sudan for exporting its oil.