AP NEWS

South Sudan allocates $40M to help integrate rival forces

December 13, 2019 GMT

JUBA, South Sudan (AP) — South Sudan’s government has allocated $40 million to speed up the integration of its soldiers with armed opposition fighters to create a unified national army as the country emerges from a five-year civil war.

This comes amid face-to-face talks between President Salva Kiir and opposition leader Riek Machar in the capital, Juba. Their talks continue Saturday on another key part of a peace deal that is yet to be resolved, the number of states.

South Sudan’s government had pledged $100 million to help fund the peace process, and the $40 million is part of that.

The international community has been pressing the rival sides to form a coalition government as a crucial part of the peace deal signed last year. A November deadline to form that government was extended to February.

The civil war killed close to 400,000 people.