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South Sudan talks on hold over disagreement on agenda; China calls for end to hostilities

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    South Sudanese information minister, Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Sunday Jan. 5, 2014. Lueth threatened to apprehend Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, the widow of former SPLM, the late John Garang, as she is spreading “negative propaganda.” (AP Photo/Elias Asmare) (The Associated Press)

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    In this photo taken Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014, a displaced mother and her baby, one of the few to have a mosquito net, wake up in the morning after sleeping in the open, some of the thousands who fled the recent fighting between government and rebel forces in Bor by boat across the White Nile, in the town of Awerial, South Sudan. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis) (The Associated Press)

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    In this photo taken Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014, 7-month-old boy Dhieu Ding Chol, left, and 5-month-old boy Thuch Jong Kuch, right, are held by their mothers as they receive treatment for dehydration, vomiting and diarrhea, likely caused by the lack of any sanitation where they are now living, at a clinic run by Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) set up in a school building in the town of Awerial, South Sudan. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis) (The Associated Press)

Officials in Ethiopia say that direct talks between the warring factions of South Sudan have stalled.

Officials close to the talks between representatives of President Salva Kiir and former Vice President Riek Machar said the peace talks have hit a snag over differences on the agenda. An Ethiopian official who insisted on anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak publicly said it has become clear that more procedural groundwork needs to be laid before talks can continue.

Violence began in South Sudan on Dec. 15, forcing some 200,000 people to flee their homes in search of safety.

China's foreign minister was set to meet both sides later Monday. Wang Yi told a news conference Monday that China wants a cessation of hostilities and the establishment of law and order.