September 28, 2016 (JUBA) - A confidential report from the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the Security Council has highlighted various ways in which South Sudanese government obstructs activities of the world body’s peacekeeping mission in the country.
- The United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon handshake with the President of the Republic of South Sudan, Salva Kiir at Presidential Palace, J1 in Juba capital on February 25, 2016 (UNMISS photo)
According to Associated Press, in one incident last month, two South Sudanese soldiers stopped a UN vehicle and threatened to kill international workers.
In another, it adds, soldiers beat a driver of a U.N. truck "with an electric cord" in Juba.
The report comes weeks after members of the Security Council visited South Sudan to convince its government to accept the deployment of regional protection forces.
The 8 September report from Ki-moon chief reportedly described as "unacceptable" the situation in South Sudan, a country hit by civil war since mid-December 2013.
Under the terms of the UN operating agreement in South Sudan, its peacekeeping mission is allowed free movement throughout the country and these incidents, Ki-moon stressed, indicated South Sudan was failing to implement the agreement.
Citing various incidences of threats made against its peacekeepers in the young nation, the UN chief says they were in "direct violation" of the operating agreement.
According to the AP, in his report Ki-moon said the peacekeeping mission "does not currently possess the capacity to absorb an additional 4,000 troops within existing space and resources".
SOUTH SUDAN LEADERS BLAMED
Last week, Ki-moon accused South Sudan leaders, including the country’s President Salva Kiir, of having “betrayed their people” by pursuing a violent path to power.
“In too many places, we see leaders rewriting constitutions, manipulating elections and taking other desperate steps to cling to power,” Ban said in his final speech before the world body’s General Assembly on Wednesday.
“My message to all is clear: serve your people. Do not subvert democracy; do not pilfer your country’s resources; do not imprison and torture your critics,” he added.
Ban criticized outside powers that have supported the warring parties on both sides of the South Sudanese conflict, but did not directly name these nation in his address.
Tens of thousands of people have been killed and millions displaced in South Sudan’s worst violence since its cessation from Sudan in July 2011. The UN has often accused the South Sudanese warring forces of gross human rights violations.
Several attempt by the world body and its member states to impose targeted sanctions, including asset freezes and travel bans, on those responsible for serious human rights abuses in South Sudan have often been thwarted by Russia.