JUBA – The African Union has condemned last month’s fatal attack against vice-president James Wani Igga’s bodyguards in which six of them were killed in Lobonok Payam of the country’s Central Equatoria state.
Last month, six bodyguards of vice-president James Wani Igga were killed following an attack near Juba.
The attack sparked outrage among the international community and urged National Salvation Front (NAS) which claimed responsibility of the attack to respect the Rome declaration which recommitted the parties to a 2017 ceasefire agreement.
In a communiqué on 15 September, the AU expressed “deep concern over the continued violations of the cessation of hostilities, and condemns in the strongest terms the attack on the bodyguards of Vice President Dr. James Wani Igga by the National Salvation Army (NAS) of Thomas Cirilo Swaka.
The communiqué extended to Sudans Post urged peace monitors including IGAD, CTSAMM to “promptly investigate these violations and report the outcomes, before the end of October 2020, to the AU, IGAD and UN, with recommendations to prevent further clashes; and underlines, in this regard, the fundamental necessity of allowing unfettered access by CTSAMVM to all affected areas and fully cooperate with the investigation, and highlighting that this recurrent form of violations will require the Council to consider effective measures against obstructionists of peace in South Sudan.”
The communiqué also condemned “recent violation of cessation of hostilities in Central Equatorial and a number of other regions, as well as the rise in inter-communal violence leading to losses of life and displacement of large numbers of the population, particularly women and children in a manner that necessitates addressing the root causes and drivers of this recurrent violence; and strongly calls on the South Sudanese parties to ensure their full compliance to their commitments as outlined in, both, the Ceasefire Agreement signed in 2017 and the R-ARCSS of 2018, as well as the Rome Declaration of January 2020.”
It further reminded the “hold-out armed groups of their commitments to cease hostilities, undertaken through the Rome Declaration and Resolution of 12 January 2020 and requests them to implement these commitments without further delay, while expressing support to the efforts deployed by the AU Commissioner Peace and Security to impress on the hold-out groups to adhere to the cessation of hostilities and engage with the peace process.”