A cease-fire has begun at midnight in South Sudan as a weary nation wonders whether this latest attempt to end a five-year civil war will hold.
President Salva Kiir and rival Riek Machar agreed on the “permanent” cease-fire this week after their first face-to-face talks in almost two years.
They had faced a possible UN arms embargo and sanctions if fighting didn’t stop and a political deal wasn’t reached by Saturday.
Multiple attempts at peace have failed. The latest cease-fire in December was violated within hours.
The civil war that erupted just two years after winning independence from Sudan has killed tens of thousands and created Africa’s largest refugee crisis since the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
Millions are near famine. The new peace deal calls for the unhindered delivery of aid.