JUBA Dec 23 The leader of a rebellion against
South Sudan's government told Reuters on Monday that he was
ready for dialogue to end the conflict and said President Salva
Kiir must first release his detained political allies.
After speaking with African and other mediators, former Vice
President Riek Machar said by phone: "My message was let Salva
Kiir release my comrades who are under detention and let them be
evacuated to Addis Ababa and we can start dialogue straight
away, because these are the people who would (handle) dialogue."
He also said he controlled oil fields in Unity and Upper
Nile states in Africa's newest nation and did not want to halt
production, saying funds from pumping oil should be deposited in
an escrow account so South Sudan did not lose revenues due to
(Writing by Drazen Jorgic and Edmund Blair; Editing by Louise