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US to issue visa restrictions on S Sudan peace obstructors

Author: Staff Writer | Published: Thursday, December 12, 2019

The White House, Washington DC | Credit | TripSavvy

The US Department of State says it will issue visa restrictions on families of individual leaders who are obstructing the South Sudan peace process.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the Secretary of State stated that the people of South Sudan “have suffered enough while their leaders delay the implementation of a sustainable peace”.

“The people of South Sudan have suffered enough while their leaders delay the implementation of a sustainable peace,” Mike Pompeo stressed.

In November, the Trump administration recalled its Ambassador to South Sudan after the peace parties delayed formation of the much-awaited government of national unity.

It also questioned the ability of President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar to lead South Sudan, adding that it would “re-evaluate” its relations with Juba.

“As the United States re-evaluates its bilateral relationship with the Government of South Sudan, the Department of State will implement visa restrictions under Immigration and Nationality Act Section 212(a)(3)(C) against those who undermine or impede the peace process in South Sudan,” Pompeo continued.

Some of the South Sudanese leaders the US government has sanctioned include Deputy Defense Minister Malek Reuben Riak, ex-army chief Gen. Paul Malong Awan, Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth, and Latjor State Governor Gathoth Gatkuoth.

The individuals have directly or indirectly impeded peace including: violating a ceasefire or cessation of hostilities agreement; violating the UN arms embargo; and engaging in corruption that fuels the conflict, according to the US government.

It blacklisted others for suppressing freedoms of expression, association, peaceful assembly, or other abuses or violations; or by failing to abide by signed peace agreements may be subject to visa restrictions.  Such visa restrictions could include immediate family members of these individuals.

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