Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier issued the following statement today (10 July) on the situation in South Sudan:
It is worrying to see that, even after five years of independence, South Sudan is still the stage for outbreaks of brutal violence and that the peace process is still in jeopardy.
Whatever the reasons for this latest outbreak of fighting, President Kiir and Vice-President Machar urgently need to call their supporters to order and ensure that the fighting stops immediately. Both sides now have a responsibility to work towards sustainable de‑escalation, not only through words, but also through concrete actions.
The fifth anniversary of South Sudan’s independence celebrated yesterday should sound a warning to all sides to stop this dreadful cycle of recurring violence and counter-violence, to work for the stabilisation of the peace process and for the country’s reconstruction and development, and not to rob the people of the country, who are already poor and suffering, of their last hope of a better future.
I expect the South Sudanese authorities to continue to do everything in their power to guarantee the safety of representatives of the international community who, often at great personal cost, are working for development and stabilisation in the country.