South Sudan: Lots of work ahead to implement the peace agreement [fr]
STATEMENT BY MS SHERAZ GARSI,
POLITICAL COORDINATOR OF FRANCE TO THE UNITED NATIONS
TO THE SECURITY COUNCIL
(Translation from French)
New York, 15 September 2021
Thank you, Mr. President,
I too would like to thank Nicholas Haysom, Reena Ghelani and Ms. Nanija for their interventions.
I would like to emphasize three points:
France recognizes, as do others, the progress made in the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement and in particular the formation of the transitional national legislative assembly and the progress towards the operationalization of the truth and reconciliation commission. The authorities have also made efforts to facilitate the mobility of UNMISS, in accordance with the status of force agreement.
France is ready to materialize the helping hand offered by the Security Council to South Sudan, provided that the objectives set by the Security Council are achieved by the government. UNMISS is there to help.
However, while several commitments have been renewed recently, the bulk of the measures are still pending, particularly with regard to the security sector reform and the implementation of transitional justice mechanisms.
The Security Council has set a strategic direction for the mandate of UNMISS, which is guided by the holding of elections planned at the end of the transition. France takes note of the recommendations made by the Secretary-General in preparation for this deadline. We encourage UNMISS to set up an electoral assistance team. We call on the authorities to prepare as of now the legal framework for the elections, the operationalization of the national electoral commission and the allocation of the resources necessary for the organization of the elections.
In this regard, we call on all parties to put unity first. The fragmentation of some of the signatory parties to the revitalized peace agreement represents a threat to the respect for the cease-fire. In this regard, we welcome the efforts of the IGAD presidency to ease tensions.
France also calls on all parties to respect international humanitarian law and human rights.
In this regard, we are concerned by the measures taken to block calls for demonstrations. Arrests, intimidation of those involved, and widespread Internet blackouts are unacceptable. We call on the authorities to guarantee freedom of expression and peaceful protest. We are also concerned about extrajudicial killings in Warrap and Lakes states. We call on the authorities to guarantee respect for human rights and to fight against impunity for the perpetrators of violations, including those committed against children and women, which the speakers have referred to in detail.
We also condemn the attacks against humanitarian and medical personnel. We know that South Sudan is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for humanitarian workers. It is important that the perpetrators of violence against these personnel be brought to justice and sanctioned by the Council. The humanitarian needs are immense, as it has been detailed by OCHA, and the risk of famine is increasing. In this context, it is important that humanitarian and medical personnel be able to move freely in order to deliver assistance to the population, that they be able to do so without hindrance and without fear of being targeted.