South Sudan President Kiir Replaces Vice President Machar: Radio

South Sudan President Salva Kiir replaced his long-time rival Vice President Riek Machar in a blow to a peace deal aimed at ending more than two years of civil war.

Mining Minister Taban Deng Gai will take over the position, Eye Radio reported on Monday.

Conflict in the oil-producing country has left tens of thousands of people dead and forced more than 2 million to flee their homes. The main rebel group, which is loyal to Machar, returned to Juba in April and joined a transitional government that seeks to reform the economy and security forces before elections in about 30 months.

The peace agreement had already been shaken earlier this month by a renewed bout of fighting between forces loyal to the two men, which left at least 270 people dead and sent Machar into hiding.

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