Brende: – Strengthened UN mandate in South Sudan essential

Foreign Minister BrendeOslo.Foreign Minister Brende : Jon Olav Nesvold / NTB scanpix

Foreign Minister Brende supports the decision of the UN Security Council to create a protection force with a clear mandate to protect civilians in Juba in southern Sudan.

– The Government of Southern Sudan has shown that it is not able to protect the civilian population. The UN Security Council has acted on this,  Brende said in a statement on Saturday.

The Security Council decided on the night before that a regional protection force of 4,000 troops is to be sent to Juba. This will be  in addition to the UN force of up to 13,000 peacekeeping troops who are already there.

Brende believe that it will be essential for the Sudanese government to cooperate constructively with the United Nations for the establishment of the protection force.

– South Sudan’s leaders now have the opportunity to show that they care about the civilian population  and to show their willingness for there to be peace. Norway believes that the Security Council  also needs to adopt targeted sanctions and arms embargo like the UN Secretary-General has requested,  the Foreign Minister said.

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan has previously been criticized for having failed to protect civilians during attacks on UN facilities in the previous month.

But the government of Salva Kiir is critical of the new mandate and believe it increases the risk of direct clashes between the country’s government forces and UN soldiers.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today