Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Sudan: Kiir replaces Garang

The Sudan People’s Liberation Army named Salva Kiir, the SPLA’s deputy chairman to replace John Garang, Sudan’s vice president and the former rebel who died in a helicopter crash on Saturday, just three weeks after becoming new vice president.

Mr Kiir will succeed Mr Garang as national vice president and president of a separate southern administration, said Samson Kwaje, the SPLA’s spokesman. Mr Kiir, who was one of the original members of the former rebel movement when the war erupted in 1983, now faces the daunting challenge of ensuring the implementation of a January peace deal that ended a 21-year civil war in southern Sudan.

Leaders of the SPLA, who are holding an emergency meeting in southern Sudan, unanimously agreed that Mr Kiir should replace Mr Garang.

[...] Mr Kiir is far less well known outside the SPLA and is regarded as more of a military commander than a politician. (source)
Here's hoping that the peace deal survives this tragedy (death of Garang).

MORE ....
- Uganda's New Vision newspaper has published what is probably the last interview Garang granted ....

- al Jazeera on Kiir's appointment .... "Kiir and Garang had their differences, and the new chief will have to assert his authority in southern Sudanese ranks .... Kiir will also have to rebuild north-south trust, damaged by Garang's death."

- BBC Monitoring has a round-up of news clippings of Garang's death ....