24 January 2014 - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, has welcomed a ceasefire agreement, which warring parties in South-Sudan signed yesterday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In a statement he called on government and rebels to continue without delay a national political dialogue to reach a comprehensive peace agreement.
The ceasefire seeks to ease a political dispute in the world’s youngest nation between President Kiir and his former deputy, Mr. Machar, who was removed from office in July of 2013 and later accused of attempting a coup. The tensions escalated on 15 December into a full-scale conflict between forces loyal to either side, driving more than 400,000 people from their homes and leaving twice as many in dire need of aid.
Ivan Simonovic, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, described the conflict as „a horrifying humanitarian and human rights disaster“ after a 4 day visit last week.
In his statement the UN Secretary-General called for parties to ensure ensure freedom of movement of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), humanitarian workers and human rights monitors.
"The United Nations stands with the people of South Sudan and will continue to do everything within its means to protect civilians at risk and provide the necessary humanitarian assistance,“ Mr. Ban said.
The UN Security Council voiced support for the agreement and condemned violent attacks against civilians. "The Council Members, all of them, expressed support for UNMISS [UN Mission in South Sudan] and reiterated importance that all parties cooperate fully with UNMISS,” said Mahmoud Daifallah Mahmoud Hmoud, Senior Deputy Permanent Representative of Jordan, which holds this month’s rotating presidency of the Council.
For further information see UNRIC Library backgrounder: http://www.unric.org/en/unric-library/26835
Un Secretary-General´s statement: http://www.un.org/sg/statements/index.asp?nid=7426
The Brussels based United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe - UNRIC provides information on UN activities to the countries of the region. It also provides liaison with institutions of the European Union in the field of information. Its outreach activities extend to all segments of society and joint campaigns, projects and events are organized with partners including the EU, governments, the media, NGOs, schools and local authorities.
United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe (UNRIC Brussels)
Residence Palace, Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 155, Block C2,7th and 8th floor, Brussels 1040, Belgium
Tel.: +32 2 788 8484 / Fax: 32 2 788 8485