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U.S. ambassador urges speedy deployment of unified forces

Author: Michael Daniel | Published: Saturday, July 8, 2023

South Sudan People's Defense Force Battalion of 720 soldiers flagged off for a regional peacekeeping operation. (Photo: Lou Nelson/Eye Radio).

The U.S. Ambassador to South Sudan calls on a unity government to speed up deploying the unified forces and drafting the constitution. 

Ambassador Michael J. Adler said the country needs a single-chain military commander and a new constitution.

The U.S. diplomat was speaking to the media after meeting Presidential Advisor on Security Affairs Tut Gatluak in Juba on Friday.

He said the meeting also discussed the conflict in Sudan and Washington’s efforts to support the South Sudan government in resettling returnees.

“We discuss the importance of continuing and sustaining the transitional government funding and effort to help those South Sudanese returned to the country,” he said.

Mr. Adler also voiced concerns about the “slow peace process” where critical provisions are still pending.

This includes the completion of deployment of the necessary unified forces, he said.

“I think anybody who looks at the situation in the North border understands the country needs a single military chain of commander. The country also needs a constitution.”

In May, the U.S. government approved 22 million dollars for South Sudan to respond to the humanitarian crisis caused by the war in neighboring Sudan.

– Deployment –

The country’s leadership on Thursday, June 6, directed the immediate deployment of the graduated members of the Necessary Unified Forces and the start of Phase Two of the training.

The Presidency meeting was attended by the First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar, Vice President Dr. James Wani Igga, Vice President Taban Deng Gai and Vice President Hussein Abdelbagi.

The call for deployment comes after the army headquarters, on June 27, 2023, distributed 350 positions between the SSPDF, SPLA-IO, and SSOA in the middle command – based on the power-sharing ratio in the 2018 peace agreement.

The allocation of administrative positions in the army is the latest tangible breakthrough in the deployment of forces as provided for in the Security Arrangement.

Chapter Two of the peace agreement has been sluggishly implemented since the formation of the unity government three years ago.





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