South Sudanese President Salva Kiir has said he will not allow any more foreign troops into his country to back the peacekeeping troops already in the country as demanded by regional leaders and the United Nations.
Kiir said his country already has thousands of foreign troops at the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) for the peacekeeping duties.
“No. We will not accept even a single soldier,” Kiir said. “There are over 12,000 foreign troops here in South Sudan.”
The president questioned the need to deploy any more troops into the country.
“What do you need more forces for? What will they come and do? The UNMISS here has so many foreign troops. So we will not accept even a single soldier. We will not accept that.”
Forces loyal to President Kiir and those loyal to first vice president Riek Machar engaged in a five-day gun battle since Thursday last week.
The two leaders declared a ceasefire on Monday.
Machar left the capital Juba with his troops to an unknown location in the outskirts, but said he is not planning for any war.
President Kiir also said he does not want any more bloodshed in the world’s youngest nation. He reached out to Machar to return to Juba so that they can engage in talks to see the ceasefire hold.