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Ceasefire Monitors report improved accessibility to sites

Author : | Published: Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Chairperson of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission says ceasefire monitors have reported an improvement in access to areas in the Equatoria region.

Festus Mogae says the Ceasefire Transitional Security Monitoring Mechanism has recently conducted patrols with the full support of the government and UNMISS in Yei, Mundri and Maridi.

In a quarterly report by the Chairperson of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission, CTSAMM recently deployed an investigation team to Yei to verify and investigate an allegation of burning of 1,900 houses in November 2016.

In addition, CTSAMM is investigating several ceasefire violations, most of which are in the Equatoria and Upper Nile regions.

However, JMEC chairman Festus Mogae, says there exists severe restriction of freedom of movement in other areas due to the activities of what he describes as non-signatory unidentified armed groups in CTSAMM’s operational areas.

The report says while CTSAMM appreciates the administrative and Force Protection assistance it receives from UNMISS, the absence of dedicated force protection units that can deploy in a timely manner hampers its operations.

These factors impede CTSAMM’s ability to efficiently deliver on critical mission activities.

The JMEC quarterly report says another significant challenge that has hindered CTSAMM’s ability to conduct investigations is inability to contact leaders of armed groups in the Equatoria.

A new report released by CTSAMM shows series of violations of ceasefire arrangements since June 2016.

Two weeks ago, a United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) integrated convoy comprising of civilians, a team from the Ceasefire and Transitional Arrangements Monitoring Mechanism (CTSAMM) and force protection from the UNMISS, travelled to Yei to assess the humanitarian situation and investigate Human Rights’ violations following reports of conflict in the area.

During the long-range patrol, the team visited locations where houses were burnt at Lutaya, in the outskirts of Yei and Sangari, four kilometers along the Yei-Lasu road. The convoy also went to Kaya at Uganda South Sudan border.

The team reported that the areas visited have been deserted as people left due to the conflict.

In Yei, the ceasefire monitors conducted a two-day civic-military workshop aimed at improving the relationship between Sudan People’s Liberation Army and civilians.

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