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Lack of trust delaying graduation of unified forces: activist

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May 16, 2021 (JUBA) - The delay in graduation of the unified forces in South Sudan is mainly due to lack of trust and confidence among the parties onbunification of ranks, an activist said.

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South Sudanese civil society activist Edmund Yakani (The Niles/File)

Edmund Yakani was reacting to reports that delays in the graduation of forces were due to the arms embargo imposed on South Sudan.

In May last year, the Security Council adopted a resolution extending for a year an arms embargo on the world’s youngest nation and a travel ban and financial sanctions for targeted individuals.

“The delay [in the graduation of forces] is much of political will issue than issue o absence of arms,” Yakani told Sudan Tribune Monday.

The activist said the argument would have been logical if the forces that reported to the training sites for their unification were fighting soldiers prior to signing of the revitalized peace agreement.

“So if soldiers currently at training sites lack guns, it means they were not the actual fighting soldiers. So why is this happening?” he asked.

According to the activist, the parties to the peace deal had enough arms in their hands during the civil war and thus the need to register those arms to be used by the graduating unified forces.

The revitalized peace agreement calls for the establishment of unified forces made up of 83,000 soldiers to take charge of the country’s security during the three-year transitional period.

(ST)

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