South Sudan: Armed Conflict

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 28th July 2022.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the 2022 Elie Wiesel Act report to Congress by the US State Department on the situation in Abyei, an area contested between Sudan and South Sudan, published on 15 July.

Photo of Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

We note the Elie Wiesel Act report to Congress by the US State Department and share the concerns highlighted regarding intercommunal violence in Abyei. The UK has taken a leading role in supporting the wider processes for justice and accountability in Sudan and South Sudan, and will continue to call for accountability for crimes committed in Abyei. We urge the Governments of Sudan and South Sudan to regularise meetings of the Abyei Joint Oversight Committee and agree joint security mechanisms to improve stability in Abyei until its final status can be agreed. Most recently, the UK Special Representative to Sudan and South Sudan discussed Abyei with Sudanese authorities on 28 June in Khartoum, and will discuss this issue with the South Sudanese authorities in Juba later this month.

The UK Government is heavily engaged with the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) and we welcomed their mandate renewal from the UN Security Council on 12 May. We join the UN Secretary-General's call for the African Union to intensify its mediation efforts to help reach a political solution for Abyei. We will continue to work with the UN and the humanitarian community in Sudan and South Sudan to address humanitarian needs in Abyei and call on the governments of both countries to allow humanitarian actors to deliver aid without hindrance.

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