Zee Media Bureau
Juba: Reiterating its call for immediate cessation of hostilities in South Sudan, the United Nations Security Council urged the fugitive former Vice President Reik Machar to come to negotiating table with President Salva Kiir “without any preconditions”.
The fighting in South Sudan that has pitted Kiir`s Dinka tribe against Machar`s Neur tribe, has been going on since two weeks now and has killed over 1000 people, according to the UN.
The clashes have also displaced over 1,80,000 people.
African Union on Tuesday warned that sanctions would be imposed against those fostering violence and hindering the international efforts aimed at resolving the crisis by negoatiations.
On Monday, the 15-member UN council released a press statement saying,"The members of the Security Council expressed their deep concern at the situation in South Sudan, in particular the devastating impact of the crisis on South Sudan`s civilian population and the continuing threat to civilians".
The UN also hailed the efforts of regional leaders in trying to resolve the situation in the oil-rich East African country as the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) pushed for immediate dialogue between Machar and Kiir.
Kiir`s strong ally Uganda President Yoweri Museveni on Monday urged all regional nations to intervene and “defeat” the rebel forces if Machar did not agree to a cease-fire.
Wary of escalation of the conflict, Museveni said they will “have to go for” Machar in case he refuses peace talks.
Meanwhile, South Sudanese Army said that rebel forces loyal to Reik Machar were fighting the government troops to retake the control of Bor, a strategic town rich in oil.
The government forces had only last week taken back the control of Bor from Machar`s loyalists also called as the White Army as they smear white ash over their bodies.
The conflict in South Sudan was triggered on Dec 15 when Kiir accused Machar of attempting a coup on him.
However some oficials say that the clashes wee sparked after the presidential guards from Kiir`s majority Dinka tribe tried to disarm guards from the Nuer tribe of Machar.