Addis Ababa January 13/2018 The African Union, United Nations and the Troika countries have condemned the continuing violence in South Sudan in clear violation of a cessation of hostilities they worked together with the IGAD to achieve last December.
Conceived to create a conducive environment for the South Sudan High-Level Revitalization Forum, which will resume its activities in February, the Cessation of Hostilities (CoH) agreement of 21 December 2017 is breached by the fighting parties on daily basis.
According to Sudan Tribune, military analysts said that every party seeks to secure its control over the maximum of position ahead of the Forum that will start by discussions on the implementation of the permanent ceasefire agreement.
In a joint statement issued yesterday, African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat and Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, "strongly" condemned the recent violations of the cessation of hostilities agreement.
In similar terms, the Troika members, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States "strongly" condemned the breach of humanitarian truce which also meant to allow humanitarian groups to reach civilians in the war-affected zones.
"They call on all South Sudanese fighting parties to immediately cease all hostilities, desist from undertaking any further military operations, and uphold their commitments to the 21 December 2017 Agreement," Mahamat and Guterres said.
The Troika countries in their statement further called on all parties to "ensure humanitarian access throughout the country".
The three guarantors of the process said the government and rebel forces are involved in a series of violations in "Unity State and the Greater Upper Nile region, as witnessed by ceasefire monitors". They further pointed to movement of government troops into Jonglei state.
"The Troika also noted with grave concern the strong evidence from multiple sources linking the attacks in Gudele, Jubek State, on January 4 to former SPLA Chief of Defiance Paul Malong and forces under Lt. Colonel Cham Garang, SPLA-IO commander," the statement said.
The African Union and the United Nations chiefs and the Troika clearly warned that they would impose sanctions on the warring parties if they didn’t abide by their obligations and responsibilities.
"We remain committed to holding to account all those who obstruct the realization of lasting peace for the people of South Sudan, whether or not they are participating directly in the Forum," the three western countries said.