KIGALI - The visiting Southern Sudan Members of Parliament have made an official request to Rwanda to recognize their country as a sovereign state after the referendum.
The 25 lawmakers made the request yesterday while meeting both the president of the Senate and the Speaker of Parliament, Dr. Vincent Biruta and Rose Mukantabana respectively.
“For a country to be recognized, other countries have to first recognize it. This is why we request Rwanda to recognize Southern Sudan as an independent nation after the referendum,” said Janet Aya Alex, the head of the delegation, said;
The referendum is expected to take place in January and will determine whether South Sudan breaks away from the Khartoum government.
The referendum is part of the 2005 comprehensive peace agreement that ended a 22-year war between the Muslim north and the Christian-dominated southern Sudan, but leaders from both sides are yet to agree on all modalities of the vote.
“Preparations are on course although we are facing a challenge of limited resources and finances to carry on massive mobilization. But that will not stop us from doing what we are supposed to do,” said Aya.
In response, Biruta told the Southern Sudan MPs that Rwanda’s position will base on the stand by the African Union.
MP Aya said that Rwanda will remain South Sudan’s focal place for learning and to help them recover from a long civil conflict.
She also requested Rwanda to open up an embassy in S. Sudan to facilitate residents acquire travel documents to Rwanda and boost the relations between both countries.