EU calls for efforts to bolster South Sudan peace talks

2015-02-05 10:08:48 GMT2015-02-05 18:08:48(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

NAIROBI, Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- The European Union on Thursday called for international community to be involved in South Sudan peace process which has made little progress towards a peace deal.

In a statement issued in Nairobi, the EU said despite considerable efforts by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) mediation and the apparently successful outcome of the Arusha talks between Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM )factions, no tangible progress has been achieved.

"The agreement signed in Addis Ababa on Feb. 2 between President Salva Kiir and Riek Machar has made little significant progress towards a comprehensive peace agreement in South Sudan," the EU said.

Under the new peace pact, the warring factions agreed to adjourn further talks until Feb. 19 when the negotiations resume ahead of the final and comprehensive peace pact on March 5.

However, in its statement, the EU said leaders of all groups and parties should go beyond short-term interests and build on the initial talks to make the necessary compromises for peace, and for the benefit of all the people of South Sudan.

"It is essential the current negotiations are completed no later than March 5. The EU supports the IGAD-led process and encourages a closer involvement of the international community," the statement said.

"In particular, it supports repeated IGAD and AU warnings that if the two sides continue to violate the ceasefire mechanism or fail to finalise a political agreement, appropriate sanctions will need to be adopted by the international community," the EU warned.

The European bloc said the conflict that broke out over a year ago has been a disaster for the people of South Sudan and has put at risk the stability of the entire region.

The EU said it believed that the publication of the Commission of Inquiry's findings and its recommendations on accountability are necessary to ensure that such violence against civilians cannot be undertaken with impunity.

"The people of South Sudan and in particular the victims deserve no less, and it will in the long run enable greater accountability and give rise to more robust political stability," the EU said.

The new war in South Sudan, which has already cost at least 50, 000 dead and displaced nearly two million, started slightly over a year on December 15, 2013 when former Vice President Riek Machar left the government in a huff when President Salva Kiir accused him of plotting a coup to seize power.

When Machar left government, he immediately became the leader of the South Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA-in opposition) while President Kiir was left holding to the ruling party, the South Sudanese Liberation Movement-Government of South Sudan Republic (SPLM-GSSR).

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