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24 Feb 2015
Warring factions in the South Sudan conflict should be urged to “cease military operations or face the consequences”, a senior UN official has said.
The head of peacekeeping operations Hervé Ladsous asked members of the Security Council on Tuesday to issue a statement to that effect.
A new round of peace talks between the parties has resumed in Ethiopia backed by the East African economic and political bloc IGAD.
Jocelyne Sambira has more.
The UN peacekeeping chief warned that the regional efforts led by IGAD would not yield much progress given the fragile security environment in South Sudan.
Hervé Ladsous said there was an urgent need to reinforce the mediation efforts, as well as to impose consequences on the parties if they fail to show willingness to compromise.
Even more important, he continued, is the need for accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
“Accountability is indispensable for long-term peace and reconciliation. For the culture of impunity to end, those responsible for continuing it must be brought to justice. As the peace talks have just resumed, I urge the Council to consider issuing a strong Presidential Statement calling on the parties to immediately cease all military operations and make the necessary compromises to reach a comprehensive peace agreement during this round of talks, or face the consequences.”
The conflict erupted in December 2013 after President Salva Kiir sacked his deputy Riek Machar.
Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.