News / Africa

UN Chief Concerned by South Sudan Truce Breaches

South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar (R) and South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (L) exchange signed peace agreement documents in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, May 9, 2014.
South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar (R) and South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (L) exchange signed peace agreement documents in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, May 9, 2014.
Margaret Besheer
— U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he is concerned about breaches to South Sudan’s cease-fire agreement signed Friday in the Ethiopian capital.

Ban told the U.N. Security Council Monday that President Salva Kiir and opposition leader Riek Machar must work together to heal the country and end the violence that has killed thousands of civilians since December.

“If the conflict continues, half of South Sudan’s 12 million people will either be displaced internally, refugees abroad, starving or dead by the year’s end," said Ban.

The two South Sudanese leaders met Friday in Addis Ababa and signed a peace deal, but fighting has flared in recent days, with both sides accusing the other of breaking the truce.

The secretary-general told reporters that the onus is now on the two leaders to set aside their power struggle and accelerate momentum for peace.

“I asked the Security Council - they should continuously be engaged and render strong political messages, including taking necessary measures," he said.

“Necessary measures” is often diplomatic shorthand for sanctions.

Last week, Ban made an unannounced one-day visit to the capital, Juba. He met with President Kiir and then visited displaced civilians sheltering at a U.N. base where 20,000 people have sought protection from the fighting.

“I was appalled at the conditions they are having to endure, which are worse than in any of the many refugee camps I have visited around the world, including the refugee camps for the Syrian people," he said.

The U.N. mission has taken in 80,000 displaced persons seeking emergency protection at its bases across the country.  Ban said the bases are not intended as camps, but that the U.N. is working to make them safer and more hygienic.

He said the government and opposition must cooperate to allow humanitarian aid to reach those in need, and he urged respect of a proposed “30 days of tranquility” to allow civilians to return home for the planting season, as fears grow about a possible famine.

The U.N. and Norway will co-host a donor’s conference for South Sudan on May 20 in Oslo.

Last week, the U.N. mission in South Sudan issued a report saying there are reasonable grounds to believe both sides have committed crimes against humanity during the conflict.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid