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U.S. Embassy condemns renewed fighting in South Sudan, call for ceasefire

Nov 27, 2020(Nyamilepedia) — The United States Embassy in South Sudan has raised its concern over the renewed attacks on Moroto training centre in Central Equatoria State.

The US Ambassador to South Sudan Thomas Hushek speaks during a press conference at the US embassy in Juba, South Sudan, on December 19, 2019(Photo |Credit: PETER LOUIS/AFP via Getty Images.)
The US Ambassador to South Sudan Thomas Hushek speaks during a press conference at the US embassy in Juba, South Sudan, on December 19, 2019(Photo |Credit: PETER LOUIS/AFP via Getty Images.)

“The U.S. Embassy in Juba is deeply concerned by reports of renewed fighting in and around the Moroto training center in southern Central Equatoria, which has impacted trainees for the unified forces and civilians.” Reads part of the latest statement by the U.S. Embassy in South Sudan.

On Thursday, reports emerged that Maj. Gen. Moses Lokujo, who defected from SPLM-IO in October and attacked Moroto, has resumed offensives on Moroto Training centre despite that he was previously defeated in Moroto and summoned by the military leadership in Juba to answer for his actions.

The U.S. officials in South Sudan urged the parties to the Revitalized Agreement of the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) to resolve the issue and arrest the involved forces.

“We call for an immediate end to the fighting, and urge the parties to the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS), led by the Joint Defense Board, to resolve tensions in the area and restraining forces for whom they are responsible,” read part of their statement.

The U.S. Embassy further called on the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring and Verification Mechanism  to investigate the incidents ASAP for further actions to be taken.

“We understand the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) is urgently seeking to conduct an investigation; we call on all parties to fulfill their responsibilities to enable access by CTSAMVM.  Furthermore, we urge CTSAMVM to complete its investigation as quickly as possible,” the statement continued.

The Embassy said that there is no reason for defections at a time when parties have committed themselves to working together to implement the peace agreement including the establishment of a unified force. 

The officials further stressed that the defections and fighting are underscoring the urgency of peace implementation.

“The continued defections and the fighting that has ensued underscore the urgency of peace agreement implementation — including the need for progress on security arrangements and state and local power sharing.  We call upon the leaders of South Sudan to work together to build trust, address challenges, and bridge differences,” the statement stressed.

According to the institution, the people of South Sudan deserve nothing less but permanent peace and stability.

The attacking officer, Maj. Gen. Moses Lokujo defected from the SPLA-IO to SSPDF but there are allegations that he is being used to destablize training of the unified forces by elements within the government who do not buy the idea of peace.

South Sudan peace process is facing many challenges. The national government is not fully formed as president Kiir refused to appoint one governor from the SPLM/A-IO.

Other mechanisms including training and graduation of unified forces have stalled sending worrying signals that the dry season could see more escalation of violence.

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