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UNSC puts S.Sudanese leaders on notice

Author: Jale Richard | Published: Saturday, November 23, 2019

UNSC team hold talks with government side at J1 on Sunday, Oct 20, 2019 | Credit | Obaj Okuj

The United Nations Security Council has threatened to impose sanctions on those derailing the ongoing peace process in South Sudan.

For over a year now, the South Sudan government and opposition groups have been struggling to implement the revitalized peace agreement they signed in September 2018.

The pre-transitional period, which was initially planned to end in May this year, has already been extended twice due to unaccomplished tasks.

At the eve of the latest extension, the government and other political parties had insisted on the formation of the transitional government of national unity by November 12, but the main opposition leader pushed for more time.

Dr. Riek Machar argued that key parts of the security arrangements were not implemented, and therefore it was not appropriate to form the unity government.

As a result, the parties at a meeting hosted by Ugandan president in Entebbe agreed to extend the pre-transitional period by 100 more days.

In a statement on Friday, the UN Security Council said it may sanction those spoiling and derailing the ongoing peace process in South Sudan.

“The members of the Security Council stressed that actions which threaten the peace, security, or stability of South Sudan may be subject to sanctions under resolutions 2206 (2015), 2290 (2016), 2353 (2017), 2428 (2018) and 2471 (2019),” said the statement obtained by Eye Radio.

The world body charged with ensuring international peace and security reiterated its disappointment on the parties for missing the deadline on November 12th to form a coalition government.

“The members of the Security Council expressed disappointment that Parties to the Agreement failed to take the steps necessary to peacefully form a “Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity” by the previously extended deadline of 12 November, and emphasized that full implementation of all provisions of the Agreement will set the country towards the goal of peace, stability, justice, and development,” the Council said in the statement.

The Council also expressed concern that parties to the Agreement have not made substantive progress on implementation of critical tasks of the pre-transitional period of the Agreement, including transitional security arrangements and determination of the number and boundaries of states.

It also called on the parties to make immediate progress on the tasks and on outcomes agreed at the Entebbe meeting on November 9th, including disbursement of the balance of the pledged funds for implementation of the Agreement in a transparent and accountable manner.

The Council also pressed for the immediate vacation of all remaining civilian centres and populated areas by the SSPDF and the SPLM/A-IO.

The Security Council further called on the guarantors and parties of the Agreement to quickly operationalize the newly created mechanism, and work out how it will operate in coordination with the existing mechanisms and institutions of the Agreement.

In addition, the Council reiterated its call for IGAD to continue addressing the status of Riek Machar as a key confidence-building measure conducive to forming a Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity.

On transitional justice mechanisms, the UNSC said the Hybrid Court for South Sudan should be operationalized.

Further, the Council said UNMISS, CTSAMVM and R-JMEC should not be obstructed in their activities.

The UNSC further reiterated the protection of journalists, affirming that the work of a free, independent and impartial media constitutes one of the essential foundations of a democratic society.

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