UN says 28 states expansion plan “inconsistent” with peace agreement

New York/Juba, March 18, 2016 (SSNA) — The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has called on South Sudan’s parties to the conflict to respect the IGAD-Plus brokered power-sharing deal which was signed last August by South Sudanese leaders President Salva Kiir and Former Vice President Dr. Riek Machar.

The move comes as Kiir insists on expanding the existing 10 states to 28 news states.

“The parties [SPLM-Juba and SPLM-Pagak] to the agreement abide by and take no action inconsistent with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) 30-31 January 2016 communiqué, which was subsequently endorsed by the parties and JMEC, on the issue of the Presidential Decree on the creation of 28 new states,” a five-point statement issued by the UNSC reads in parts.

In the statement, the UN called on the Juba and Pagak to observe the permanent ceasefire and protect civilians in accordance with their obligations under the deal.

Rebel chief Machar, who has been designated as the first vice president under the agreement issued an order in December 2014, creating 21 states.

His rival, Kiir, later followed suit by issuing similar order, creating 28 states. However, Kiir’s plan has meet with fierce resistance from most South Sudanese, saying Kiir’s 28 states scheme violates the pact and that it also gave lands of other communities to communities seen as allies to kiir’s government.

UNSC made it clear that the deal which was endorsed by parties to the conflict and the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) for the South Sudan’s Peace Accord is binding and that it should not be violated.

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