Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Troika and EU Threaten to Stop Support for South Sudan Peace Bodies
July 26, 2017 (NAIROBI) - The Troika countries (USA, UK and Norway) and the European Union have threatened to stop their support for the activities and institutions tasked with the implementation of the IGAD brokered peace agreement and called to update the deal its instruments.

Following a meeting held in Juba on 24 July, the IGAD foreign ministers welcomed the support of the Troika and EU to their revitalization plan for the South Sudan peace process and called on the government to ensure the implementation of the ceasefire and urged the armed opposition to reciprocate.

The ministers also welcomed the commitment of President Salva Kiir to fully collaborate and implement the IGAD revitalization forum for the Implementation of the peace agreement.

However, in a confidential note to the IGAD countries seen by Sudan Tribune, the Troika and EU expressed their frustration with the implementation of the peace agreement and called for concrete steps to amend the deal and to consolidate the bodies entrusted with the monitoring process.

"We cannot continue to indefinitely support ARCSS implementation activities and institutions if they are unable to contribute to peace due to the lack of meaningful inclusion of parties to the conflict," said the Troika and EU who fund the IGAD activities and mechanisms tasked with the peace implementation.

"We look forward to a prompt and inclusive revitalization process that would allow us to consider the commitment of further resources. The JMEC has a vital role to play in the delivery of the urgent goals we have set out above. However, JMEC and other ARCSS institutions must be strengthened and adapted to deliver results in the new context," stressed the note.

The Troika and EU on 20 July issued a statement condemning the attacks by government army on the positions of the SPLM-IO in Pagak near the Ethiopian border. They said the "Pagak offensive is a clear violation of the unilateral ceasefire declared by President Salva Kiir on May 22", and casts doubts on the government’s commitment to reach peace through the National Dialogue.

In their note, they went to demand an update for the security arrangements embodied in the peace agreement saying they have been "made obsolete by the evolution of the conflict and are no longer sufficient".

The IGAD peace partners also said they do not support holding elections in 2018 as it is provided in the peace agreement pointing to the ongoing fighting, the humanitarian crisis stressing that under such conditions "elections are likely to cement divisions and increase violence".

"The Revitalisation Forum should deliver a new timetable which allows those conditions to be put in place. We do not support holding elections in 2018 as indicated in the original ARCSS," the Troika and EU said.

They requested the IGAD to closely coordinate with the African Union and the United Nations.

Following their meeting in Juba on 24 July, the IGAD foreign ministers urged the South Sudanese stakeholders to embrace the objectives of the High-Level Revitalization Forum for the Implementation of the ARCSS.

The East African block decided to task the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan with the coordination of the revitalization process involving all stakeholders and institutions charged with the responsibility of the implementation of the ARCSS.


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