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JUBA – The United States National Security Advisor, Susan Rice has urged South Sudan government to identify soldiers who attacked humanitarian workers in Juba in July and ensure they are brought to book.

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Oxfam aid workers in Mingkaman, in South Sudan’s Lakes state, oversee the distribution of food to displaced people like mother-of-six Martha Nyandit (Photo: Pablo Tosco/Oxfam)

Rice made these remarks Tuesday while meeting South Sudan’s first vice-president, Taban Deng Gai at the White House, during which she affirmed the U.S administration’s commitment to the people of the young nation as well as the necessity to deploy the United Nations-authorized regional protection forces.

“Ambassador Rice deplored the South Sudanese Government’s role in continually obstructing the United Nations Mission in South Sudan’s (UNMISS) operations and stressed the need for a rapid deployment of the Regional Protection Force,” the White House said in a statement.

The U.S it said, added, was “deeply concerned about the alleged participation of government forces in attacks against humanitarian workers at the Terrain Compound in Juba on July 11.”

Clashes in July between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and the armed opposition leader, Riek Machar clashed in Juba, leaving hundreds dead and thousand displaced.

Machar’s prolonged absence from Juba in the aftermath of the violent clashes saw him replaced by Gai whose nomination as the country’s first vice-president attracted widespread criticisms from various sections of the armed opposition movement.

The senior U.S official urged South Sudan’s first vice-president to ensure those who allegedly raped and looted humanitarian workers in Juba are brought to book.

She further advised Gai to “engage opposition groups in dialogue and ensure that it governs inclusively, with strong participation by women and without domination by a single ethnic group or political party.”

(ST)

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