United Nations, Aug 24 : A United Nations expert group looking at human rights in South Sudan has said that it is “deeply concerned” that, although the overall armed conflict has waned, there has been little progress in adhering to the peace agreement that guided the country thus far. “Civilians with whom we spoke still raised numerous concerns that they feel are barriers to sustainable peace,” Yasmin Sooka, Chair of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan, reporting from Juba on the panel’s seventh field mission, said on Friday.
During their visit, the three Commissioners listened to South Sudanese women, men and children express numerous concerns, including the localization of conflict linked to land, resources, and cattle; and inefficiencies in implementing the Revitalized Peace Agreement, which, signed by the warring parties in September 2018, has been commended as a significant development toward the dawn of peace.
They are also worried about deteriorating living conditions for the internally displaced, security and the continued shrinking space for civic engagement, among many other concerns. “Despite the numerous challenges we heard, we were encouraged by the fact that committees composed of military and civil actors have been formed to improve civil-military relations and support local justice and reconciliation in Yei River state, where civilians could raise dispute resolutions,” said Commissioner Andrew Clapham.UNI