U.N. to stop South Sudan violence from wider war

Two Commissioners of a three-member team from the UN Commission on Human Rights speak to Journalists at a press conference, on September 15th. As they conclude their South Sudan trip, they called on the government and the African Union to immediately put in place mechanisms of transitional justice for accountability, reconciliation and healing - as stipulated in Chapter 5 of the peace agreement. They arrived in South Sudan on September 8th, and during their mission to South Sudan, the Commissioners; Ms. Yasmin Sooka Chairperson a leading human rights lawyer currently serving as Executive Director of the Foundation for Human Rights in South Africa, Mr. Kenneth Scott, an International Criminal Prosecutor and, Mr. Godfrey M Musila an International Criminal Lawyer, had meetings with; government representatives, UNMISS senior leadership, the UN Country Team, the diplomatic community, civil society organizations, including faith based and community leaders, and the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC).They also travelled to Malakal and Bentiu. The team was mandated in March, by the UN Human Rights Council to monitor and report on the human rights situation in South Sudan, and make recommendations for its improvement. Photo:UNMISS/Isaac Billy

The head of a U.N. human rights commission said on Wednesday,  that The international community can stop a “Rwanda-like” genocide in South Sudan if it immediately deploys a 4,000-strong protection force and sets up a court to prosecute atrocities,

“South Sudan stands on the brink of an all-out ethnic civil war, which could destabilize the entire region,” Yasmin Sooka told an emergency session of the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein said the African Union must quickly set up the court “with a strong focus on command responsibility for atrocities”.

 

Reuters/Zainab Sa’id