Thursday, June 09, 2016

New York Times gets taken in by South Sudan conflict

The New York Times is usually well-informed on South Sudan, not least because of the long-standing interest of its op-ed columnist Nicholas Kristof. But there is a bizarre op-ed still on their website from a couple of days ago, allegedly co-authored by the President and First Vice President (Salva Kiir and Reik Machar) calling for the abandonment of their joint treaty commitment to a special international war crimes court for South Sudan and its replacement by non-punitive mediation.

The biggest beneficiaries of such a move would be those two gentlemen and the senior security officials who surround them, so it's already ethically dubious.

But that's not the worst thing. The worst thing: Machar says he never authorized the article!

Sudan Tribune --

But Machar’s spokesperson, James Gatdet Dak, dismissed the claims by the officials from the president’s office, saying there was no need to dictate people into accepting the “falsified article.” “Well, what I know is that we work as partners in the transitional government. No one party should author an opinion and insert the name of the other partner as co-author. This is illegal and cheating,” Dak said. “And this is particularly a serious matter when the other partner attempts to violate the peace agreement by trying to scrap the vital clauses on justice and accountability,” he added.

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