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EU somewhat ‘softens’ arms embargo on S. Sudan

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The European Union has slightly relaxed its arms embargo on South Sudan by agreeing to allow the government purchase arms and related materials that are solely in support of the implementation of the terms of the peace agreement.

In its latest resolution, the EU Council amended its limitations imposed on export of military goods to South Sudan, to include provision of assistance or personnel, as well as technical training and assistance.

But this will first require advance approval by the EU sanctions committee.

The Council Decision 1125 of 2018, and EU Council Regulations 1116 of 2018, shall also allow inflow of arms and related material, as well as training and assistance, intended solely for support of or use by UN personnel, including UNMISS, the African Union Regional Task Force on the Lord’s Resistance Army, and the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei.

It also agreed to lift restrictions on non-lethal military equipment intended solely for humanitarian or protective use, and related technical assistance or training, as notified in advance to the Security Council Committee.

The EU further allowed protective clothing and military helmets, temporarily exported to South Sudan by UN personnel, representatives of the media, humanitarian and development workers for their personal use only.

Member States have yet again been requested to inspect, in accordance with their national authorities and legislation and consistent with international law, all cargo to South Sudan in their territory.

According to the amended resolution, “Member States shall, upon discovery, seize and dispose such prohibited items,” the statement read

The European Union first imposed the arms embargo on South Sudan in 2014, saying it wants the government of South Sudan to use resources to benefit people instead of stockpiling weapons.