Sixteen human rights organizations have asked the United Nations Security Council to maintain its arms embargo and other sanctions on South Sudan as a way of pressuring leaders to implement the Revitalized Peace Agreement.
The Security Council is meeting to review the arms embargo placed on South Sudan and the sanctions against individual leaders between 2014 and 2016.
The rights group in a letter sent to the Security Council says, international pressure has helped in the reduction of violence in recent months and provided some momentum for the peace process in South Sudan.
The group which includes, The Enough Project, Human Rights Watch, and International Refugee Rights Initiative say for the Council to decide not to renew the measures now will risk the positive developments made in the last year.
They say while progress has been made, the recent six-month extension of the pre-transitional period by the parties to the peace agreement demonstrates that sustained international political pressure from the region and the UN is essential to protect the lives of civilians, ensure the full implementation of the agreement.
The letter says that peace, security, and stability of South Sudan will continue to be threatened so long as top officials on both sides commit gross violations with impunity.
They also want the Security Council to maintain the sexual violence listing criteria in the sanctions regime and request the Sanctions Committee to enhance implementation of accountability measures in line with evidence presented by the UN Panel of Experts in their final report.
Finally, the group requested the Security Council to reiterate the need for swift and coordinated implementation and effective monitoring of the targeted sanctions regime and arms embargo, with full participation and adherence from all stakeholders in the region and the international community.
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