AFRICA/SOUTH SUDAN - African religious leaders: "Immediately implement the peace agreement otherwise South Sudan will collapse back into war"

Thursday, 19 September 2019 peace   religious leader  

Juba (Agenzia Fides) - Members of the African Council of Religious Leaders have called for quick implementation of the September 2018 revitalized peace agreement on South Sudan.
"We are further troubled by the increasing criminal acts, human rights violations and political intolerance in several locations in South Sudan", they say in a statement published at the end of the meeting in Nairobi of the ACRL/RfP.
The Council of religious leaders makes a pressing appeal to the political leadership of South Sudan to put an end to the humanitarian crisis that upsets their country: "South Sudanese leaders have a moral obligation to their citizens to end the violence and ensure continued progress toward peace, stability and justice".
In September last year, warring factions in South Sudan signed a peace agreement to end the bloody civil war that broke out in December 2013 (see Fides, 20/9/2018).
The power-sharing arrangements under the deal were supposed to take effect in May, but the process was delayed by six months until November as both sides disagreed on security arrangements.
"The failure to implement the agreement risks the country collapsing back into war and destruction and exacerbates the misery and hopelessness of the millions of South Sudanese forced to flee their homes because of war, including the almost 3 million refugees living in neighboring countries", underlines the statement sent to Fides.
The Council is co-chaired by Nigerian Cardinal John Olorunfemi Onaiyaken and Ugandan Supreme Muslim leader, Sheikh Ramadhan Shaban Mubaje.
On April 11, Pope Francis asked the political leaders of South Sudan to work for peace and the well-being of their people, at the end of the spiritual retreat, at Domus Sanctae Marthae in the Vatican (see Fides, 12/4/2019). (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 19/9/2019)