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Church calls for dialogue on S. Sudan conflictPublish Date: Dec 21, 2013
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By Taddeo Bwambale

The Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Stanley Ntagali has called for dialogue to end the week-long conflict in South Sudan that has claimed lives of hundreds of people.

About 700 people are reported to have died in the fighting.

Ntagali (right) appealed to Government to take a key role in bringing the parties involved in the war to talk and resolve the conflict amicably.

“It’s a pity our neighbours in South Sudan are at war with each other. Government should take upper hand in ensuring that our neighbours return to peace,” he stated.

Ntagali made the appeal on Friday at a press conference held at the Church of Uganda Provincial Office, where he delivered his Christmas message.

Ntagali’s appeal comes barely a day after Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) troops entered Juba to help the government in South Sudan to secure the capital, Juba.

The UPDF is also tasked to ensure the safety of Ugandans trapped in Juba, facilitate their safe evacuation and a possible return to normalcy of the troubled South Sudan.

Ntagali proposed that Uganda could play a mediation role in the crisis, observing that it was the best way to resolve the fighting that has paralysed the world’s newest country since Monday.

“Hardly two years ago, South Sudan got its independence. It was a great joy to see them free. Uganda, in the spirit of good neighbourliness, should advocate of reconciliation,” he said.

Ntagali advised Ugandans to embrace the same spirit of reconciliation during the Christmas festive season to resolve disputes without going to courts of law.

“In our own church, I call upon all people to let Jesus be the Prince of Peace and strive to maintain the unity of peace by resisting going to law courts to resolve conflicts,” he said.

He advised Christians to take advantage of the festive season to reflect on their spiritual growth instead of simply merry-making and engaging in irresponsible behaviour.

“Let this be the Christmas when you invite Jesus to be in your heart, to live there as your saviour and Lord,” he advised.

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