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US to withdraw military aid to S. Sudan as tension escalates

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February 28, 2014 (JUBA) - The United States has reportedly taken a decision to withhold its military aid to war-torn South Sudan, despite officials in the new nation saying it had not been notified about the new development.

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A U.S. Special Forces trainer supervises a military assault drill for a SPLA unit conducted in Nzara on the outskirts of Yambio November 29, 2013. (Photo Reuters/Andreea Campeanu)

The spokesperson of South Sudan’s foreign affairs ministry told Sudan Tribune on Friday that it has not received any official communication from the US or its affiliated financial institution about reports that the latter had decided to withhold military aid to the conflict-ridden East African nation.

"There is no official communication that I know from the government of the United States notifying the government of the Republic of South Sudan about its decision to withhold any assistance," said Mawien Makol.

The official was reacting to reports that President Barak Obama’s administration had decided to withhold military aid to the new nation and transfer some of that money to the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in support of the ceasefire monitoring efforts.

Several officials and activists as well as experts on South Sudan and Sudan testified on Wednesday before the congress that the current developing political and security situation in the two countries require immediate attentions and actions through strong engagements.

Ambassador Donald Booth declared in testimony to a House of Representatives panel that "business as usual" must cease in the case of strife-torn South Sudan.

"As one sign of this", he said, “I would note that our security assistance to South Sudan is not going forward at this time, and that some of it is being re-programmed to support the regional verification mission."

The top US envoy did not, however, specify the amount of US funding being transferred to the ceasefire monitoring and verification initiative being carried out by IGAD, a regional bloc that consists of Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Djibouti and Somalia as its seven founding members. Eritrea was admitted in 1993, but was suspended in 2007.

South Sudan, which seceded from Sudan in 2011, became an IGAD member the same year it joined the United Nations and African Union bodies.

The envoy also did not indicate how much funding for South Sudan’s army and police is being withheld by the US, though the research arm of the US Congress notes that aid to South Sudan’s security sector has totaled more than $300 million during the past 10 years.

In his remarks on Wednesday, Ambassador Booth criticised the performance of South Sudan government, pointing out authorities in Juba "attempted to contain inter-communal violence without fully committing to the hard work of addressing its causes, which include trauma from decades of war, economic disparity, historical grievances between communities, human rights abuses, and political grievances due to real or perceived under-representation."

"On top of this", Booth noted, "the government had also progressively reduced the space for political competition, within and outside the ruling party, and for independent media and civil society voices to be heard.”

He endorsed the efforts by IIGAD, which is presently mediating the talks between the government and the rebels, who defected in mid-December, to try to resolve the conflict in the youngest nation.

"Their premise, one with which I agree, is that the government must not be given the space to return to business as usual with a quick fix and political accommodations for the main protagonists, for the simple reason that this will not bring about a sustainable peace".

Meanwhile, John Prendergast, a leading US human and civil rights activist, also testified before the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations on the developing situation Sudan and South Sudan.

Prendergast is a Co-founder of the Enough Project, an advocacy group which aims to prevent, war and crimes against humanity as well as genocide. He told the hearing that mass atrocities, war crimes and crimes against humanity are being committed in both countries under the cover of war.

"Although the headlines for the last two months have been dominated by conflagration in South Sudan, conditions in Sudan’s Darfur region have deteriorated, and the [Sudanese] government’s bombing campaigns have intensified in the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile", he said.

"The potential for a complete interruption in oil production threatens economies in both countries with implosion and bankruptcy. Conflict has interrupted the planting season, and with the rainy season fast approaching, humanitarian crises are spiraling out of control in both countries," added the activist.

Prendergast argued the US government to consider targeted sanctions as one instrument to create some accountability for the commission of war crimes and undermining of peace efforts.

"The African Union has already put targeted sanctions on the table for South Sudan, and the US should do so as well. If the UN Security Council is not amenable to utilizing this tool, the US should work with interested countries to deploy them in coalition with others”, he said.

Prendergast visited the South Sudanese capital, Juba and Bor one of the areas most affected by the conflict at the beginning of February.

(ST)

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  • 1 March 07:49, by omoni jr.

    Bravo U.S
    Do not fund the private militias that turned their guns against the citizens of this nation.

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    • 1 March 07:52, by omoni jr.

      Just sanction them for life, they are no good,just bunch of criminals that deserves nothing but heave and cruel punishment.

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      • 1 March 07:56, by Mi diit

        The US should not only sanction Mrs. Kiir Museveni, but also her husband in Uganda. US should also cut back its financial support to that poor country called Uganda, b/se its leader is a terrorist and violent-oriented. Ban all their officials from travelling to US.

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        • 1 March 10:39, by Muorcienggok

          midit, we do not have gays in South Sudan if you one time tried it and you feel that you need to be fucked more then go back to where you did it for the first time, bilateral relationships exist everywhere but does not mean a president of one country is the husband for the other. shame on you to call the hero a wife of M7 you did not do what he has done. we do not need US’s aid.

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        • 1 March 10:45, by Muorcienggok

          midiit if you want US’s aid the formula is simple, go and let Obama bonk(fuck) you with your mam father and sisters and then suck his dick(penis) you will get it man. South Sudan is endowed with vast natural resources, and that is why America is very much interested in causing chaos here in order to get access to our resources through fools like you.

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        • 1 March 14:54, by Tiger

          Who care about that aids.
          I knew from the beginning that fool like Riek Machar’s mind shall be played one day by these greedy countries just to get their feet inside S.Sudan to get our oil,same thing they killed Dr.John just so they can rob the resources without someone to stop them,now President Kiir appears to be sharing the same ideas like Garang so they want to get rid of him also.

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      • 1 March 08:07, by Tutbol

        *shalla!* Let the US withdraw its UNIMISS mercenaries as well! The US creeped into S Sudanese communities & hearts by playing the agent of good, when in fact, the US was all along was playing, the agent of good for S Sudanese; when in its rear tandem, was playing the destruction of our country & our peoples. The US can go to hell with its evil millitary aids. S Sudanese would better off with...

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        • 1 March 08:08, by Tutbol

          out the US DAMN MILITARY aids.

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          • 1 March 11:43, by omoni jr.

            Tubol
            M7 will provide you military aids money as well for food, do not insult U.S as if it was the one caused this mess. just blame your own chief of thief, salva kiir.Time to fool the west is over my dear.Grow your own food instead killing yourselves like wild-animals in jungle. I know desperate you are, but you pretend like you do not care!!!! that’s lie man.

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        • 1 March 08:49, by Majongdit

          Tutbol,
          You very right my friend. UNMISS mandate must now be terminated.

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      • 1 March 08:08, by Chol A.

        We would like US to go a head with sanction that’s where we can eliminated these Nuer cockroach militias. Please withdraw your stupid bias aid to South Sudan and give it to your Nuer militia we South Sudan had Knew US stand.

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        • 1 March 08:23, by Mi diit

          And all the oilfields are to be captured by the Nuer fighters. Where will you go you cowards and beggars? Mrs. Akiir will join Museveni in Kampala and lick their heels with tears...

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          • 1 March 09:33, by Majongdit

            several thousands of youngmen nicknamed "Amiath-noon" cleaned the whole of Unity State. another several thousands called "Mathiang Anyoor" cleaned Bor and Gadiang. Next is having another several thousands to clean up the whole of Upper Nile if the rebels do not heed to ceize fire and agree to peaceful resolutions.

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            • 1 March 10:01, by Tutbol

              Majongdit’
              President Kiir had sheepleD the SPLM/A majongdit, the Nuers were given a advantage by president Kiir & both of his military advisors to scale down the S Sudanese army, while the UN was advocating for disarmaments in Jonglei state, when other communities like the Murle & Nuer communities got away with their weapons.

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        • 1 March 08:25, by Rami Tot

          US should not give this support to the criminal government of Dinka dinka has destroyed all instution of south sudan and use these resources to kill innocent civilian of Nuer that is why American government is not happy about the genocide committed by those criminals of Dinka in fact this senseless war is a war between dinka and Nuer and no body should involves on it

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          • 1 March 10:54, by Muorcienggok

            it is only the fool that thinks South Sudan is for Dinkas,be educated that we are 64 tribes and everyone is presented in the government, if that is the idea in your mind to why you staged failed coup which tuned into rebellion in which many people have died then it is very unfortunate you will never have Nuer’s state let me assure you

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            • 1 March 11:05, by Rami Tot

              where r those 64 tribes in our national institutions if u go u will get all of them are all dinka from up to bottom plz don,t try to fool us while we r seeing by our naked eyes together with world observer, look those who always speak on steet giving thank to government are all dinka and say from Aweil or lake or warrap state no other state in juba i did not see a fool community like dinka in life

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          • 2 March 06:54, by agondong

            Rami , Dinka is not criminal government as u said is a mirra government where 64 tribes of south Sudan see themselves take a look of Nuer , Marial Benjamin minister of foreign Affairs , jame Hoth spla general chief of staff ,James kok Gai minister of Education ,plus they rest of Nuer holding other big positions .if u Nuer don,t get shame u try to get shame on what u always wrote on the website .

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      • 1 March 10:30, by Muorcienggok

        Had we all chose to be dish cleaners in Khartoum as Nuers did in 1991 and had we all offered our wives and daughters to be fucked routinely as it was done by the Sudan arms forces in Juba then we would not have South Sudan. we fought for 15 years alone when Nuers defected to bring you South Sudan on golden plate but surprisingly instead of appreciation people began to cry about us, shame on you!

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    • 1 March 09:01, by Jewish Ally

      that is good because US is even behind machar rebellion and for this Matter South Sudan doesn’t care about the Aid of Obama. if i was President Kiir I will make U turn from this fuck Capitalist relation to Communist

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      • 1 March 09:06, by Jewish Ally

        America is only after the oil of South Sudan which drilled by China He think after overthrow kiir American companies will come in. let see if it will materialized, you kill Our Hero want he praises Russia and other communist block, but at the end did not succeed in your plan. now you are putting RSS into confusion owe to and hell to your Administration

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        • 1 March 09:10, by Jewish Ally

          Aid with String attached is good for nothing to South Sudanese, we reject your evil policies on African. the evils you are doing for instance like Gay marriage in which you are cutting Aid to Uganda is noted by all Africans. to hell with your Aid Mr Obama.

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    • 1 March 10:03, by Ayom Ayom

      I don’t think cutting Military will have any impact on South Sudan, imagine 21 years fighting with enemy in Khartoum without oil money and we made it.

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    • 1 March 13:17, by Diversity

      Let them cut it all we don’t care as long as we know ourselves as dinkas,we can fight any agreession without external support,come whatever.
      Let the stupid family of Lado Gore, Riak Machar and Rebecca Nyandeng plus the idiot Madut Bior and Chol Tong go to hell with their supporters.

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  • 1 March 08:29, by Wicdail

    Kirr and his supporters are naturally stupid. They created this ugly war while they don’t have the ability to control its outcomes. They don’t even know that the Wests hate their rotten to the core system like a hell. This is the just beginning. No military aid from US and its allies; and no money from oil! Where will these criminals will survive?

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  • 1 March 08:48, by Projector

    No reason to argue here, no aid is free from Western World.They are always expecting something in return. If US withdraw its aid it will at the same times affect them. Those are just securing words. Obama told Museveni if "he sign anti-guy bill he will withdraw any aid given by US" Whites can’t survive without Africans period.

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    • 1 March 23:16, by australian

      Shame on you for your mean-spirited words. Australia gives aid to South Sudan and expects nothing in return. We also feed, clothe, house and educate many thousands of South Sudanese here. Most of them don’t work.

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  • 1 March 10:15, by Majongdit

    who needs this US military aid anyway? and it’s 300 million over the last 10 years, that 30 million per year. what is 30 million to a country after all? What will Riek’s rebellion give to US? Nothing. Oil in this country is 90% Dinka homelands. If its all the US wants, then it is not the Nuer that give it. Aid or no aid, South Sudan will still be South Sudan.

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    • 1 March 17:02, by Tutbol

      The people that are fight our in country are people, who are Africans from the UK, the US, Australia, Canada & all, even some claimed to be from the Nordic countries. They are not all Nuers. S Sudanese are at war, our arch criminals like the US, the UK & their juus are not & will never be in our nilotics Sudan. Reason, their culture is evil...

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      • 1 March 17:15, by Tutbol

        It is that plain. And what the US, UK & their criminals juus have done in S Sudan, is not going to be business another as usual, the war they brought to our peoples has divide us between them. The Americans, the Brits or juus are evil peoples. Because their peoples dabble in evils.

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        • 1 March 23:22, by australian

          You need to stop blaming other people. No people can be divided if they are not already divided. If you don’t want to live in the modern world, then put a fence around your country, forget the oil, live like you used to, and wait and see. Your fence will keep out the Westerners you hate, but it will not keep out the Muslim slave-traders. They will find a way in.

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          • 1 March 23:24, by australian

            And by the wat, Tutbol, you rude man, I think the word you appear to be having trouble spelling is "Jews". Show some respect.

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  • 1 March 11:25, by Marco Bul

    The gov’t is not protecting civilians in Twic East abd Duk Counties.They are angry bcoz civilians were spared by Nuer militias.Local chiefs were beaten as asked,"Why were you not killed by Nuer"?!.What kind of gov’t that loves pple only when they are killed??

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  • 1 March 13:12, by Guandong

    Government of Kiir is not committedfull for the COH signed in Addis Ababa. It has killed innocent people with false claims of coup. It is now wasting the country is money by hiring UPDF. It has paid its troops in Malakal with piasters such that they are bignotes of ssp. Therefore American government has right to cut off the aid.

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  • 2 March 03:01, by Axios

    List of receivers of U.S. foreign aid assistance and amounts if anyone is interested.
    http://www.foreignassistance.gov/web/countryIntro.aspx

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