Statement by Anna Evstigneeva, Deputy Permanent Representative of Russia to the UN, at the open VTC of UNSC members on South Sudan
We thank Special Representative of the Secretary-General David Shearer for the report on the situation in South Sudan. We would like to reconfirm our lasting support for the activity of Blue Helmets and your “good offices” that constitute an essential element of international community efforts for stabilization in South Sudan. We are also thankful to countries-contributors of police and military contingents to the UN mission.
We have taken into account the assessments of the humanitarian situation that Under-Secretary-General Lowcock shared today. We also listened carefully to the statement of Ms. Tai.
Two years have passed since the “Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan” was signed, and we see the main trend – peaceful arrangements work, parties are committed to implement them. We are convinced that it is the task of the international community, including the Security Council, to render the much needed support to the South Sudanese in this most complicated for the country (and the whole world) period.
We welcome progress in peace process that has been achieved thanks to compromise agreements of the sides. We believe appointment of governors, as well as other officials at the national and local levels will contribute to the state-building.
It is important that the sides show readiness to overcome differences by means of a frank dialogue. We hope that implementation of agreements of transitional period will resume soon, once the circumstances allow. If only sides fully and comprehensively meet their obligations, they can enhance mutual trust and avoid repeating mistakes of the past.
We note that the recent Secretary-General’s report pointed out decrease in the level of political violence. Just as our colleagues, we are concerned by the outbreak of inter-communal clashes. At the same time, we call not to overdramatize. We must take into account the entire range of challenges that exist for Juba, including the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic that has affected the leadership of the republic as well. At the same time, we see commitment of the South Sudanese to be in command of the situation and truly address the outstanding problems. In this regard, we point out the initiative of President Salva Kiir to establish a committee for consideration of the situation in Jonglei State and administrative area Greater Pibor.
We see the trend of refugees and IDPs to return to their places of permanent residence. In the first place, we link it to the implementation of confidence-building measures and contacts between the opposing sides on the ground. It is important that they continue upholding conditions for ceasefire. We call on the non-signatories of the Revitalised Peace Agreement to join the state-building process.
We have no doubt that the “first fiddle” in accompanying the South Sudanese peace process must be played by the regionals. We welcome the efforts of IGAD and the African Union that embody the principle “African solutions – to African problems” We also note normalization of relations, i.a. through restoring economic ties, between South Sudan and its neighbors.
We would like to make a specific point about mediator efforts of Juba and personally President S.Kiir that provided platform and support for peace talks between the representatives of transitional government of Sudan and Sudanese armed groups.
In conclusion, we would like to stress again that progress in South Sudanese settlement was reached in no small measure thanks to the political will of the sides and efforts of regional mediators rather than sanctions pressure, to say nothing of unilateral restrictions. In this regard, we expect that in accordance with resolution 2521 a comprehensive review of the sanctions regime will soon take place in order for the SC sanctions to be adapted it to the reality on the ground.