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South Sudan says European Union sanctions “unfair”

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July 13, 2014 (JUBA) – The South Sudanese government has described as “unfair and unjustifiable” last week’s sanctions imposed by the European Union on Santino Deng, one of its top army generals.

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South Sudan’s defence minister Kuol Manyang Juuk, speaks after a cabinet meeting in the capital, Juba, on 17 January 2014 (Photo: Reuters/Andreea Campeanu)

“It is unjustifiable and unfair for the European Union council to sanction a commander of an army division for carrying out constitutional mandate. This is not right,” defence minister Kuol Manyang Juuk told Sudan Tribunein an exclusive interview on Sunday.

He was reacting to Thursday’s announcement by the EU that it would apply travel bans and freeze any eurozone assets of Deng and rebel commander, Maj. Gen Peter Gadet.

While Deng was accused of taking part in May’s recapture of the Unity state capital, Bentiu, Gadet was described as the leader of the anti-government Nuer militia that conducted an attack on Bentiu in April, violating the 23 January ceasefire agreement.

“The attack resulted in the killing of more than 200 civilians. Peter Gadet is thus responsible for fuelling the cycle of violence, thus obstructing the political process in South Sudan, and for serious human rights violations,” the EU said in its 11 July journal.

South Sudan’s presidential spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny, said EU’s decision could well be equated to a similar sanction imposed by the United States administration on Major Gen. Gadet and the head of the country’s presidential guards, Maj.Gen. Arial Chanuong Yol.

Yol was accused of killing an unknown number of people in Juba in ethnic-related attacks during the first days of the crisis.

The offending actions, for both the US and the EU, are thought to be related in part to the ethnicities of Machar, a Nuer whose forces are largely drawn from his own ethnic group, and President Salva Kiir, an ethnic Dinka whose troops, are somewhat more heterogeneous. The Sudanese-national victims in Bentiu are thought to have been mistakenly targeted as a result of reports that members of the Darfuri Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) had fought alongside government forces.

The EU and US sanctions are potentially far-reaching. Cash and assets held in America and any of the 27 EU member countries are vulnerable to seizure. The EU has explicitly threatened punitive action against any banks operating in its member territories, which carry out transactions with anybody named by it in relation to the crisis in South Sudan.

It is also believed that international cash transfers by the accused men may be vulnerable.

Speculation of the action constituted a warning across the country during the event of continued failure to bring the conflict to an end followed by action against those the chain of command. Many members of South Sudan’s elite in the leadership, on all sides of the current conflict, have close family members settled in Europe and America, some living in properties which could presumably become subject to seizure in the event of any extension of the current sanctions.

The US sanctions allow the seizure of assets believed to have “materially provided financial, material, logistical, or technological support or goods or services in support” of activities obstructing the peace process; supporting actions which lead to human rights abuses; and obstructing the work of the UN.

The specification was made possible against individuals known to have supported individuals subject to US sanctions.

(ST)

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  • 14 July 08:30, by Mel mosa

    It is clear that EU and the rest were planned the coup to bring Riek to power because Riek lied to them about sharing South Sudan resources with them. That is why they target military commanders who were managed defeat Riek militias men.

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    • 14 July 08:55, by Toney Toney Matot

      Dear Minister,
      it is well understood that America and EU are targeting the government not rebels. Bentiu Massacre was well known world wide that it was carried out by Peter Gadet and broad casting of hate message through local Radio. what have General Deng Wol did here to serve sanction? why should they America and EU talk always of human right when they do not practice it.

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    • 14 July 09:51, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

      Not really fair
      the sanctions is running on, as Riek Machar is requesting.
      The list of those who had been sancts are.
      1. James Koang Chuol,
      2. Gatthuoth Gatkuoth
      3. Gatwich Duop Lam.
      AND
      4. Santino Deng Wuol
      but number one to three have been omitted from sanctions list.

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  • 14 July 08:41, by Mr Point

    That’s nonsense!

    No facts support any of that.

    The so called coup is no longer believed. Since the show trial ended without evidence the "coup" is shown to be unbelievable.

    Salva Kiir’s war started when the militia carried out door to door ethnic killing in Juba in December, as a crack down on political reformers.

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    • 14 July 09:55, by Mapuor

      Mr Point
      May be Militia logic is different from conventional human logic.failed coups are always followed by rebellions and the objectives of rebellions and coups are always taking state power by force.May be if Dr traitor did not rebel and only flee for safety and insists on peaceful dialogue,denial of coup could have been justified.But given the current situation,it would be unwise to deny

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      • 14 July 10:02, by Mapuor

        the coup.South Sudan is a democratic country which is governed through peoples representatives in legislative assemblies and if indeed there was no coup,the two houses in Juba could have openly denied it.your blind quest for power will always destroy your towns and will keep you backward and hungry.Just forget ruling the South by force and come into perpetual submission to Juba.

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        • 14 July 11:34, by Mr Point

          @Mapuor

          These are the facts.
          Until Kiir set his forces loose on december 13 there was no rebellion and there was no coup. Some SPLM leaders had openly discussed the need for reform. That is all.
          Only after they heard that hundreds of Nuer had been murdered in Juba did the generals rebel, and several days later Riek joined them.
          Kiir’s government has not been able to prove otherwise.

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        • 14 July 11:38, by Mr Point

          @Mapuor

          South Sudan is a dictatorship ruled through an army and security force that takes 69% of the annual budget.
          Parliament is a weak and useless group that quietly does what it is told.

          But do tell me more about my "blind quest for power". I have always argued on here that the country needs political reform, not tribal warlords. Support your argument with some facts, if you have any.

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          • 14 July 18:50, by Mapuor

            Mr point
            When you look back scrupulously, on Mr traitor’s background and previous deeds,you safely deduce that what happened in Juba was nothing but coup attempt.Many former generals who were involved in the plot refused to flee to the bush simply because they know Nuer very well and some know what Nuer did to Akuot Atem IN 1985

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            • 14 July 19:07, by Mr Point

              You do not "safely deduce" anything of the sort.

              You do not have any facts on which to base that deduction.

              It’s simple: there was no plot for a coup. What happened in December was all a reaction to what Salva’s gang did.

              That is why the court case against the detainees failed for lack of evidence. Simply: there was no evidence of any plot.

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  • 14 July 08:57, by Freedom Fighter

    I agree it’s unfair and I add that, Europeans will never be fair with Africans and black people in general because they still believe Africans are half humans. The irony of the matter is that they’re now in full support of Ukrainian government against rebels in the East and Western Ukraine while sanctioning a faithful Army general in South Sudan who is carrying out his constitutional mandate.

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    • 14 July 09:35, by Logic

      100% right Mr Freedom Fighter... The West is not interested in our human rights, its only mentioned when it suits their objective. The point u made about Ukraine is the epitome of their hypocrisy. Support one rebel and condemn another as long as it serves their geopolitical goals. Africans need to learn from history in order to influence their destiny.

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      • 14 July 14:15, by Ito

        comrade deputy leader for democratic forces Alfred Lado Gore was right to say we have brought in Khartoum government system and install in south sudan,the same system that SPLM under Garang have been fighting against since 1983. America, europe and all democratic countries were supporting Garang and Bashir was against them. Now the same SPLM is against america and europe who use to support them.

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        • 14 July 14:20, by Ito

          Dr. Garang vision is forgotten as mama Nyandeng said in media. Most of those who stayed with him in bush until 2005 and onward like Salva are not nationlists, or patriots, they are just for money because they knew they would get positions. Now you can see how they react badly to democratic countries which Garang used to be very close friends with. But we will fight under Riek to achieve real SPLM

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          • 14 July 14:23, by Ito

            objectives. We are tired of hearing 1991, and so on. That is why madam Nyandeng said the government have no any other way to convince people and they resorting to scratching old wounds which will not bring us anything but just fueling violence. Should we start scratching all wounds also? We will do that if people continue to talk of 1991

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