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What South Sudan expects from a Biden presidency

Author: Jale Richard | Published: Sunday, November 8, 2020

Then US Vice-President Joe Biden meets President Salva Kiir in 2010 before the Southern Sudan seceded in 2011/File/AFP

The government of South Sudan has said it is hoping to improve its relations with the United States following the election of Joe Biden to the White House.

According to projections by major US media, Joe Biden has won key battleground states propelling him over the 270 Electoral College vote threshold required to clinch the White House.

President Donald Trump’s campaign has indicated their candidate does not plan to concede.

Many world leaders have already congratulated the president-elect Joe Biden.

Among other African countries are Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

President Salva Kiir’s office has yet to release a public statement, but when contacted, the office congratulated the US president-elect upon his victory.

“We congratulate Joe Biden and his vice president-elect, Kamala Harris,” Ateny Wek Ateny, the Press Secretary in the Office of the President told Eye Radio on Sunday.

“We are looking forward to working with them because the United States is a super nation and its politics affects other countries in one way or the other. So we are looking forward to strengthening our relations with the United States so that we continue to enjoy better relationships and work for the betterment of this country South Sudan.”

However, South Sudan is under the United States inspired UN arms embargo for the civil war that started in 2013.

The US has also sanctioned several senior government officials for their roles in continuing the civil war in South Sudan.

Mr. Ateny says he hopes the new US administration would work towards lifting some of the sanctions including the arms embargo.

“We are looking forward to the democrats coming now to power to lift the arms embargo because South Sudan is now seriously engaged in the peace process.”

He added: “We hope that the democrats will understand this because this is a country they midwifed and therefore they cannot work for the downfall of the country they midwifed.”

Last year, the former US ambassador to South Sudan, Thomas Hushek said his country can only lift sanctions imposed on South Sudan when its leaders restore peace.

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