US deeply disturbed by inter-ethnic clashes in South Sudan

: Expressing deep distress over the inter-ethnic clashes in South Sudan, the US today called upon its government to address issue of lack of security in the country and asked the UN to provide additional support if required.

hidden January 18, 2012 08:40:21 IST
US deeply disturbed by inter-ethnic clashes in South Sudan

Washington: Expressing deep distress over the inter-ethnic clashes in South Sudan, the US today called upon its government to address issue of lack of security in the country and asked the UN to provide additional support if required.

"The United States continues to be deeply disturbed by the recent inter-ethnic clashes in Jonglei state in the Republic of South Sudan that are causing tremendous human suffering, displacement, and death," the National Security Council Spokesman Tommy Vietor said.

US deeply disturbed by interethnic clashes in South Sudan

Victims of ethnic violence in Jonglei, state, South Sudan, wait in line at the World Food Program distribution center in Pibor, South Sudan to receive emergency food rations. AP

The long-running cycle of violence between certain tribes, particularly the Murle and Lou Nuer, has escalated to an alarming series of revenge attacks in recent weeks, and all sides have been asked to refrain from further provocative or retaliatory acts, he said.

"We welcome the South Sudanese government's launch of an investigation into these attacks and its deployment of additional military and police forces to the region, and we support efforts by the UN and non-governmental organisations to provide urgently-needed humanitarian assistance to those who fled the fighting," Vietor said.

The US official said that it is important for the South Sudanese government to respond not only with immediate measures to stem the escalating cycle of attacks between these tribes, but also to address the root causes of violence between them.

"In particular, we urge the South Sudanese government to address the lack of security in these communities, and we urge the leaders of these communities to engage each other in a peaceful manner to come to a long-term resolution to the violence," Vietor said.

The US also noted the mandate of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) with respect to conflict prevention and civilian protection, and called upon UN to continue working closely together on this vitally important mission, he added.

PTI

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