UN Security Council alarms over rise of “ethnically targeted killings” in South Sudan

United Nations Security Council. Photo: Newsteam/UN/Getty Images
United Nations Security Council. Photo: Newsteam/UN/Getty Images

New York/Juba, November 19, 2016 (SSNA) — The United Nations Security Council has strongly condemned the escalation of targeted killings, saying it is deeply concern over what it described as “escalation of ethnic violence” in South Sudan.

The Council issued a statement late Friday, hours after the US proposal to impose an arms embargo on South Sudan and blacklist rival South Sudanese political and military figures failed.

The unsuccessful US proposal demanded that the UN blacklisted South Sudan’s rebel leader Riek Machar, SPLA Chief of Staff Paul Malong Awan, and Information Minister Michael Makuey Lueth.

The 15-member Council expresses outrage over rise of hate speech, ethnically targeted killings, and incitements to violence perpetuated by South Sudan warring factions including armed groups and militias.

The Council says it is deeply alarmed “over the escalation of ethnic violence in South Sudan reportedly carried out by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), the SPLA in Opposition, as well as militias, and unidentified armed groups.”

UNSC calls on all parties to the conflict to address ethnic violence, hate speech, and promote reconciliation among South Sudanese communities. The Council also said warnings issued last week by UN genocide expert is troubling and ensure its readiness to take necessary measures to prevent the civil war from escalating.

There have been reports of mass killings in Yei town with Infants hacked with machetes, charred bodies with their arms bound, women gang-raped, and that those who survive the violence are arbitrarily detained allegedly by government soldiers.

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