Russia opposes to UN sanctions and arm embargo on South Sudan

Posted: October 16, 2016 by PaanLuel Wël in Junub Sudan, Press Release

Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, October 13, 2016

At least 15 countries have recognized South Sudan so far, including major world powers such as the United States, Britain, Russia and China.

October 16, 2016 (SSB) —- Let’s turn to the situation around South Sudan. We are concerned with the continuing dire domestic political situation in this country. We are confident that there is no alternative to a political peace settlement there. We are urging belligerents in South Sudan to immediately stop hostilities and to once again honour the provisions of the 2015 Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan.

We are closely following the implementation of the provisions of UN Security Council Resolution 2304 on deploying the Regional Protection Force as part of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS),  and creating favourable conditions for the operations of “Blue Helmets.”

Official Juba has expressed its willingness to honour the provisions of this resolution. South Sudan and UN representatives are now discussing specific issues in the resolution, including within the framework of a specially established technical working group.

On May 31, 2016, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 2290 extending targeted sanctions against South Sudan for another 12 months. Russia has supported this resolution and firmly opposed the inclusion of provisions for essentially predetermining expanded UN Security Council sanctions against the Republic of South Sudan, including the introduction of an arms embargo.

We have repeatedly voiced apprehensions that excessive pressure, all the more so with sanctions, can make it harder to accomplish these tasks and compel South Sudan warring parties to toughen their positions. Russia resolutely rejects a situation where, instead of engaging in serious political and diplomatic work, someone is trying to arbitrarily apply sanctions, especially in the UN Security Council. Let’s not forget what the Government of South Sudan needs to maintain security, law and order in the country.

By the way, the UN Secretary-General has not recently urged the UN Security Council to expand sanctions against South Sudan. Nor have we heard any conclusions from his Secretariat that official Juba hampers the deployment of the Regional Protection Force. It turns out that there is no reason to “punish” South Sudan so far.

This is proved by the September 30 letter from the Government of the Republic of South Sudan to Samantha Power, the US Ambassador to the UN. Unfortunately, this letter was circulated among members of the UN Security Council on October 11 only.

On the whole, we advocate well thought-out political and diplomatic moves in support of the peace process in the Republic of South Sudan. We support the initiative of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in Eastern Africa to strengthen security in South Sudan, including the establishment of the Regional Protection Force.

We believe that IGAD and the UN Secretariat will continue to work constructively with Juba for the purpose of coordinating acceptable options for the deployment of the Regional Protection Force, with due respect for the sovereignty of South Sudan and while honouring basic UN peacekeeping principles.

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