Washington, DC - The United States expresses grave concern with the outbreak of fighting in Juba on July 7 and 8. We urge all parties in the Transitional Government of National Unity to take immediate steps to reduce tensions. We call on the leaders of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movements in government and in opposition to immediately direct their forces to disengage and cease fighting. We welcome the joint public message by President Salva Kiir Mayardit, First Vice President Riek Machar Teny, and Vice President James Wani Igga calling for calm.
We have pressed the leaders of the Transitional Government at the highest level to accelerate implementation of the peace agreement. Sustained cooperation, engagement, and reform to confront the country's grave challenges are essential to avoid a return to widespread conflict. We have urged South Sudan’s leaders to operationalize the security arrangements in the agreement, particularly by establishing Joint Integrated Police units to patrol Juba, empowering the Joint Operations Center to ensure communication and coordination between forces in Juba, and directing the Joint Military Ceasefire Commission to operate continuously.
We hope that today, the fifth anniversary of South Sudan’s independence, can serve as a reminder of the promise of the new nation and foster a spirit of unity and peace for the coming year.