I spoke yesterday with South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit to reiterate the United States’ concerns about the political situation in Juba, as well as the deeply disturbing violence and worsening humanitarian crisis in Jonglei State.
I urged President Kiir to form a new government quickly and transparently in a manner that respects South Sudan’s Transitional Constitution, and in a way that also reflects the diversity of its people.
I also encouraged him to act expeditiously to protect civilians, end human rights violations, and take urgent steps to cease ethnically motivated violence in Jonglei State.
Those responsible for human rights violations and attacks on civilians – including members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army – must be held accountable.
Lifesaving humanitarian assistance must be allowed to reach the estimated 100,000 civilians affected by the fighting.
I was present for South Sudan’s historic, peaceful referendum, and I saw firsthand the hopes of a people for a better future.
Too much sacrifice has been made to see that effort go backwards.
The world is watching to see if South Sudan pursues the path of peace and prosperity, or the tragic path of violence and conflict that has characterized much of its past.
The United States will remain a steady partner to those who aspire to stand on the side of democracy, justice, respect for human rights, and who work for the brighter future the South Sudanese people deserve.