IGAD: Head of States Summit agrees protection force for IDPs, NGOs and JMEC.
Mahboub Maalim yesterday told South Sudanese media that "there will be protection force to protect civilians" and JMEC.
The Minister of Information Michael Makuei confirmed this upon arrival from Addis today. He said that what was agreed was a protection force and not an intervention force.
Addressing the press with the Minister of Petroleum Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, they said that IGAD and GRSS agreed in principle a protection force to:
(a) Protect IDPs
(b) JMEC staff and
(c) Humanitarian agencies.
"We said that mandate, its number, its funding and deployment will be [negotiated] and agreed with the government," Makuei said.
"The idea of intervention force was rejected. It is not acceptable," Amb. Ezekiel Lol added. Unusually, no communiqué was issued by IGAD at the end of the meeting.
Contrary to rumours spread by James Gatdet the First Vice President and the whole delegation, and representatives of SPLM-IO-ITB took part in the deliberations and were not kicked out according to Amb. James Morgan, South Sudan's representative to AU.