South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir has apologised to the people of South Sudan for the suffering they went through during the two-year civil war.
Kiir said that the apology was a first step toward reconciliation and justice, and he acknowledged that the “unnecessary” conflict brought unbearable suffering to the South Sudanese people.
More than 2.2 million people have been displaced by the fighting that begun in December 2013 after Kiir accused his former deputy Riek Machar of plotting a coup against his government.
Machar denied the allegations and went ahead to form a rebel army to fight the government.
Kiir and Machar signed a peace deal last year to end the war.
“It is important to reconcile… to reach a point of harmony and unity within ourselves and with our neighbours,” Mr Kiir said during a ruling SPLM party convention.
The president appealed to the people of South Sudan to use the meeting as a turning point to launch the process of “national healing, forgiveness, truth and reconciliation”.
There have been various efforts to meditate an end to the conflict in South Sudan, and now, there are moves to form a national unity government.