The White House declares South Sudan’s civil war a ‘national security threat’

Washington, DC, March 31, 2015 (SSNA) — The United States’ President, Barack Obama, on Tuesday signed an Executive Order 13664, saying South Sudan’s raging civil war poses a direct threat to US’s national security and foreign policy. Obama decided to extend US’s national emergency of April 2014 beyond April 2015 so that the US can deal with South Sudan’s mounting problems.

The order comes more than fifteen months after fighting broke out in Mid-December of 2013.

In the document, Obama ordered US national emergency to deal with threat poses by the ongoing civil war in South Sudan. The US leader also stressed that the war in South Sudan has created instability for the surrounding region including widespread atrocities and human rights related issues.  

“I declared a national emergency to deal with the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States constituted by the situation in and in relation to South Sudan, which has been marked by activities that threaten the peace, security, or stability of South Sudan and the surrounding region, including widespread violence and atrocities, human rights abuses, recruitment and use of child soldiers, attacks on peacekeepers, and obstruction of humanitarian operations,” the order reads in part.

The Executive Order, which will be published in the US’s Federal Register and transmits to the American Congress, explicitly labels South Sudan’s armed conflict as a threat to the US interests.

“The situation in and in relation to South Sudan continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.  For this reason, the national emergency declared on April 3, 2014, to deal with that threat must continue in effect beyond April 3, 2015,” the document added.

The US presidential order appears to be indicating that the Obama administration is closer to take action. However, it is not clear what actions Obama will take to restore peace in the war-wracked nation.

On March 5, IGAD-led peace talks between South Sudan’s warring factions collapsed in Ethiopia after President Kiir and rebel leader Dr. Riek Machar failed to agree on power sharing, security arrangements, among others.

On Tuesday, South Sudanese information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth announced that Juba does not want Troika countries (US, UK, and Norway) to be part of future South Sudan’s peace negotiations. But Minister Lueth failed to provide any reason as to why his government wants Troika out of the talks.

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