Ambassador Rice’s remarks on Sudan and South Sudan

U.S. Mission to the United Nations, New York, NY

I welcome the UN Security Council’s unanimous decision today to issue an important and long overdue presidential statement on the situation in Sudan and South Sudan. The Security Council expressed alarm about the risk of resumed conflict between North and South, which would halt the incipient progress made by South Sudan and profoundly damage the interests of both sides. The Security Council demanded not only the cessation of military operations in the border regions and a return to direct talks but full cooperation with the United Nations and other humanitarian agencies to ensure immediate and unhindered access for humanitarian assistance in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile. In addition, the Council urged progress on the many critical, outstanding post-independence issues, including Abyei, oil and financial arrangements, border demarcation, and procedures for determining nationality. The United States remains deeply concerned about the grave humanitarian situation in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile, where hundreds of thousands endure the daily threat of violence and looming famine without an urgent infusion of life-saving assistance.

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