Briefing by the Special Representative for UN Mission in South Sudan



Mr. President,
I have the honor to read this statement on behalf of members of the A-3, namely Gabon, Kenya, and my country Ghana. At the outset, we take note of the Secretary-General comprehensive report contained in document S/2022/689 and thank SRSG Nicholas Haysom, for his useful insights on the situation in South Sudan. The A-3 also appreciates and takes note of the additional briefings by Mrs. Lilian Riziq, President of South Sudan Women Empowerment Network (SSWEN). We welcome the participation of our brother, the Permanent Representative of South Sudan to this meeting.
Mr. President
The A3’s statement will focus on three issues, namely, the political, security and humanitarian situations in South Sudan.
First, in respect of the political situation in South Sudan, the A3 welcomes the gradual implementation of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS) witnessed over the last four years, despite the challenges. The A3 also welcomes and commends the signatory parties to the Revitalized Agreement for unveiling the roadmap extending the transitional period by 24 months to enable implementation of its key outstanding tasks. Moving forward, we urge an all-inclusive process to create national ownership of the roadmap, through dialogue and consultations with all segments of the society, including women groups, the youth, and civil society, in its implementation.
The A3 also welcomes the progress on the formation of the Necessary Unified Forces (NUF), in particular the recent graduation of more than 20,000 members of the unified national army, police, and other security forces. This is a key milestone in strengthening the capacity of South Sudan security institutions to protect civilians and address insecurity, including the intermittent inter-communal violence, human rights concerns, and also guarantee the territorial integrity of the country. We urge the parties to expedite the graduation of all remaining forces.
It is important for the international community to continue to support the implementation of the Transitional Security Arrangments, in particular providing adequate support to fund, equip, deploy, and sustain the forces over time. The NUF graduation should usher in a new phase in the peace process and be built upon through the implementation of all the outstanding tasks in the Revitalized Agreement. We continue to urge all political leaders to place the overall interest of the nation first, in their discussions and decisions.
The A3 reiterates the call to the AU, IGAD, the UN, and other bilateral and multilateral partners, not to relent in their efforts but to continue to extend the necessary assistance and financially support the activities of the Revitalized Agreement implementation oversight mechanisms and institutions, including CTSAMVM and RJMEC.
Mr. President,
On the security situation, the A3 remains deeply concerned by the reoccurring intercommunal conflicts in some parts of the country. We condemn the reported fresh attacks and violence by armed elements, including those targeted at internally displaced persons at the Adidiang island site in the Upper Nile State. We are also deeply concerned about the renewed hostilities in some parts of Unity State, Upper Nile state and Jonglei state, that resulted in killings of civilians, the abduction of women and children, and new displacements.
We urge all armed groups to immediately cease hostilities and observe the permanent ceasefire. We further call on the Government of South Sudan to intervene urgently to de-escalate the situation, protect civilian lives, and also investigate these incidents. The A3 also condemns the reported incidences of extra-judicial killings and urges for thorough investigations. Those who perpetrate heinous crimes should be held accountable.
Mr. President,
The dire humanitarian situation in South Sudan is worrying with the reported increase in internally displaced persons and higher levels of food insecurity. The effects of Climate Change have continued to worsen the situation, with South Sudan facing severe flooding, localized drought, and conflicts driven by the struggle for livelihoods.
The A3 wishes to reiterate its call for increased international donor support to respond to the humanitarian situation, including to help increase the capacity of the United Nations World Food Programme to deliver food aid to South Sudan. We urge the Government of South Sudan to put in place additional measures for the protection of humanitarian workers and facilitate unhindered humanitarian access in all parts of the country.
The A3 takes this opportunity to condemn the attack on a humanitarian vehicle in Eastern Equatoria State on 9 August, resulting in the death of a fifth humanitarian worker since the beginning of the year. We express our deepest condolences to the family of the deceased. We call on the perpetrators of such attacks to immediately cease such hostilities toward aid workers who are sacrificing their lives under challenging circumstances to serve humanity.
Further, improving the country’s economic situation remains a key element in alleviating the humanitarian situation. The A3 takes note and welcomes the economic recovery measures implemented by the Government of South Sudan. The much-needed reforms to help diversify the country’s economy, promote agriculture and food security, as well as infrastructure development will require significant international resource support. The A3 reiterates its call for additional international donor development assistance for the country.
Mr. President,
Finally, the A3 wishes to underscore that, moving forward, peacebuilding and post-conflict reconstruction, including capacity building of South Sudan public institutions remain a critical area of focus in supporting South Sudan. We appeal to the Government of South Sudan to take advantage of the opportunities available at the UN Peacebuilding Commission. The A3 also welcomes and commends UNMISS and the UN Country Team for continuing to provide technical assistance and capacity-building assistance to the various South Sudan institutions.
The A3 joins the Secretary-General in conveying our deep appreciation to the troop and police-contributing countries, SRSG Haysom, and uniformed and civilian personnel of UNMISS for continuing to work tirelessly towards peace in South Sudan.
I thank you, Mr. President.