(Bloomberg) -- South Sudan’s parliament approved extending President Salva Kiir’s term of office by three years, the assembly’s spokesman said, as efforts to reach a peace deal to end the country’s civil war continue.

The extension is effective immediately, spokesman Paul Yoanes Bonju told reporters Thursday in the capital, Juba. Kiir has ruled the world’s youngest country since its independence in July 2011.

To contact the reporter on this story: Okech Francis in Juba at fokech@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Richardson at pmrichardson@bloomberg.net

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