17th January 2021
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U.S ‘deeply concerned’ by reports of fighting in Kajo-keji area

Author: Daniel Danis | Published: Saturday, November 28, 2020

The U.S. Embassy in Juba has called for urgent progress on security arrangements to end military defections and conflicts being reported in some parts of the country.

It said it “is deeply concerned by reports of renewed fighting in and around the Moroto training center in southern Central Equatoria, which has impacted trainees for the unified forces and civilians.”

On Thursday, the SPLA-IO accused General Moses Lokujo of attacking a training camp for the unified forces under the command and control of the Joint Transitional Security Committee and the Joint Defense Board.

General Lokujo switched sides from the SPLA-IO to the SSPDF in September.

The ceasefire monitors also said General Lokujo has blocked access to the military training camp.

Some religious leaders also said a place called Liwolo in the western part of Kajo-Keji is among areas severely affected by hostilities between the SPLA-IO and forces of General Lokujo.

In a statement issued Friday evening, the United States called for an immediate end to the fighting, and urge the parties to the revitalized peace agreement, led by the Joint Defense Board, to resolve tensions in the area and restrain forces for whom they are responsible.

“We see no reason for defections at a time when parties have committed themselves to work together to implement the peace agreement, including the establishment of a unified force,” it stated.

It further urges the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring and Verification Mechanism to urgently investigate the incidents.

“We understand the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) is urgently seeking to conduct an investigation,” the embassy said. “We call on all parties to fulfil their responsibilities to enable access by CTSAMVM.”

The U.S embassy asked the leaders of South Sudan to work together to build trust, address challenges, and bridge differences.

The statement further advised the parties to quickly establish state governments and agree on local power-sharing arrangements. It underscored the urgency of implementing the revitalized peace agreement.

“The people of South Sudan deserve nothing less,” the statement concluded.

Full Press Release here.

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