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(left-Right) Presidents Yoweri Museveni (Uganda), Uhuru Kinyata (Kenya), Paul Kagame (Rwanda) and Salva Kiir (South Sudan) at Serana hotel in Kigali for the 6th Northern Corridor Integration Summit. Wednesday, 3rd July 2014.
(left-Right) Presidents Yoweri Museveni (Uganda), Uhuru Kinyata (Kenya), Paul Kagame (Rwanda) and Salva Kiir (South Sudan) at Serana hotel in Kigali for the 6th Northern Corridor Integration Summit. Wednesday, 3rd July 2014.

Uganda’s intervention in the conflict in South Sudan helped save lives and property that would have been lost, South Sudans’ President Salva Kiir has said at the opening of the 6th Northern Corridor Integration Project Summit at Kigali Serena Hotel in Rwanda.

Salva Kiir hailed President Museveni and the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF) for their intervention to save the lives of civilians in South Sudan.

“I know this is not part of the summit but I have to raise it here. If it were not for the intervention of President Museveni many more lives and property would have been lost. But we are still strong and determined to defeat the enemy although they continue to break the cease fire agreement,” said Salva Kiir.

Uganda deployed troops in South Sudan shortly after clashes erupted in South Sudan mid-December last year and has raged on for close to six months now.  An estimated 10,000 people, according to the International Crisis Group (ICG), died in the weeks of conflict, with as many as 850,000 displaced in various parts of the country.

South Sudan President Salva Kiir and his former Vice President turned foe Riek Machar last month signed a peace deal which called for an immediate truce and the formation of a transitional government ahead of the drafting of a new constitution and new elections.

Ugandan troops were in the country on the invitation of Juba government requesting for immediate intervention militarily to restore calm in the country.

During the introductory remarks President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya said they concurred with the resolutions passed earlier by the ministerial meetings and others passed during recent summits.

The North Corridor Ministerial Meeting approved the formal joining of the Republic of South Sudan while Burundi decided to stay as observer for the coming three months and eventually join the projects. The projects under the Northern Corridor also rose from 8 to 14 to expedite holistic integration of countries of the Northern Corridor. The Ministers also deliberated on the importance of diversifying finance sources to move forward with speedy implementation of the projects.

The 6th Northern Corridor Integration Projects Ministerial Meeting was held on July 2, 2014 in Kigali, Rwanda and was attended by Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Foreign Minister of Uganda, Sam Kutesa, Barnaba Benjamin Marial, Foreign Minister of South Sudan, Louis Mushikiwabo, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Rwanda, Engineer Michael Kamau , Cabinet Secretary of Kenya , Dr. Richard Sezibera, Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC) and representative of the government of Burundi and other high level officials.

Ethiopian Foreign Affairs minister Tedros Adhano commended countries in the northern corridor for promoting integration based on strengthening peace trade and economic development in the region. Tedros urged all individuals in member countries who have been assigned to deliver and fulfill their duties to enable partner state benefit from the economic integration.

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