By John Ikani
The UN Security Council on Friday announced that it has renewed an arms embargo and sanctions against South Sudan amid continuing unrest in the country.
The UN’s resolution to extend the ban until 31 May 2023, will direct all Member States to prevent the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer of arms to the territory of South Sudan
Resolution 2633, which was adopted on Thursday with 10 votes in favour and five abstentions, also extended targeted sanctions against South Sudanese individuals.
Countries that abstained from voting include Gabon, Kenya, India, Russia, and China abstaining.
The embargo was imposed in 2018 after a peace agreement ended five years of bloody civil war between factions loyal to President Salva Kiir and Vice President Riek Machar.
When the embargo was last extended a year ago, authorities in South Sudan were given a list of political and security conditions in order for the restrictions to be lifted or relaxed.
However, earlier this month, a UN expert panel recommended that the embargo remain in place over persistent ceasefire violations as well as over the government’s imports of armored vehicles
Rights group Amnesty International has welcomed the decision.
“The [embargo] is crucial to curtailing the flow of weapons that have been used to commit or facilitate war crimes, human rights violations and abuses including conflict-related sexual violence,” it said in a statement.
The world’s youngest country has experienced pervasive insecurity since seceding from Sudan in 2011.
The 2013-2018 war left nearly 400,000 dead and millions displaced.