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Security Council renews arms embargo on South Sudan

May 31, 2019 (UNITED NATIONS) — The United Nations Security Council Thursday extended for an additional year the arms embargo and sanctions against South Sudan.

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The UN Security Council votes unanimously to impose sanctions on those blocking peace in South Sudan (Photo: UN/Devra Berkowitz)

The Resolution 2471 was adopted by a vote of 10 in favour with five abstentions, which were from three African countries in the Council, Russia and China.

South Africa, Côte d’Ivoire, and Equatorial Guinea stressed the need to give IGAD mediation efforts more time, to achieve the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement.

The resolution also extended until 30 June 2020 the mandate of the Panel of Experts overseeing the sanctions regime, with instructions to provide monthly updates, an interim report by 1 December 2019 and a final report by 1 May 2020.

The sanctions which were adopted in July 2018 provide that all Member States will prevent the supply, sale or transfer to South Sudan, from or through their territories, of arms and related material, and withhold training, technical and financial assistance related to military activities or materials.

The representative of the United States, the penholder of the resolution, expressed disappointment that African members of the Council did not support it, three months after the Council unanimously adopted resolution 2457 (2019) supporting the African Union’s “Silencing the Guns in Africa by the Year 2020” initiative.

However, he acknowledged some initial progress towards peace since sanctions were strengthened 10 months ago, and said the United States is ready to consider adjustments as he encouraged regional actors to assume a greater leadership role.

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Poland’s representative who chairs the Security Council’s South Sudan sanctions committee said the 2018 revitalized peace agreement has yet to produce results. The arms embargo should therefore continue, said the Polish diplomat, noting that the drop in violence has been a direct result of the sanctions.


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