South Sudan's peace deal under serious threat, warns UN

Top UN official in South Sudan urges speedy implementation of 2018 peace agreement for peace, stability in country

Benjamin Takpiny   | 08.12.2021
South Sudan's peace deal under serious threat, warns UN

JUBA, South Sudan

The UN on Wednesday warned that the South Sudan peace deal was under serious threat due to slow progress on its implementation.

Speaking to reporters in the capital Juba, Nicholas Haysom, the UN chief’s special representative for South Sudan and head of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), said: “I commend the progress made by the parties since the signing of the peace agreement, but the pace of implementation remains too slow.”

Urging the parties to urgently finalize the critical tasks of the 2018 agreement, Haysom warned: “If this continues, there is a risk that the viability of the broader agreement will come under threat.”

“Put simply, a ‘business as usual’ approach cannot continue. The parties must inject fresh urgency into the process and demonstrate a sustained, and collective political will to finalize critical areas of the agreement. This includes transitional security arrangements, legislation promoting financial and judicial reforms, and constitution-making so that elections can be held.

“This agreement must be implemented for South Sudanese. It has nothing to do with foreigners, and it is something that South Sudanese should be concerned about,” he added.

He reaffirmed the mission's willingness to support all stakeholders in the process and help restore peace and stability in the country.

Martin Elia Lomoro, South Sudan’s cabinet affairs minister, said the delay in implementation of key components of the 2018 revitalized peace deal, such as security arrangements, was largely due to insufficient funds.

“The government has contributed $81 million since the signing of the agreement. There are things that need money. When they say the agreement is going slow, it is because we are not able to get the money necessary to train our forces,” Lomoro told Anadolu Agency.

The world's newest nation has suffered from chronic instability since independence in 2011, including a brutal five-year civil war between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and his deputy Riek Machar that claimed almost 400,000 lives.

The 2018 agreement which ended the war has been bedeviled by bickering between rival parties, and key provisions of the deal are yet to be implemented.

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