Igad backs accounts freeze for South Sudan ceasefire violators

Thursday March 1 2018

Internally displaced people Juba South Sudan

People displaced by conflict in South Sudan hold a demonstration at the UN Protections of Civilians camp in Juba on October 25, 2017. Attempts to bring peace in the country have failed with previous agreements being violated within hours of signing. PHOTO | AFP 

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The Inter-governmental Authority on Development (Igad) has said it backs the freezing of bank accounts of the violators of the South Sudan ceasefire.

The Igad special envoy to South Sudan, Mr Ismail Wais, said the regional bloc was ready for the action as it continues to receive reports of ceasefire violations in the war-torn country.

“Such measures would be in line with and include any violations of the Cessation of Hostilities by any party.

“The penalties include the enactment of asset freezes, enactment of travel bans within the region and denial of the supply of arms and ammunition and any other material that could be used in war,” Mr Wais was quoted telling the UN Security Council meeting in New York Thursday.

He confirmed to the council that there have been violations of the agreement signed between the government and the rebels last December.

The special envoy said those found guilty after the verification from the monitoring agency, the Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement, Monitoring and Mechanism (CTSAMM), would be held accountable.

South Sudan Information minister Michael Makuei said the government was not opposed to the move, but questioned the criteria to be used to determine the offenders.

“Do those people whose bank accounts they want to freeze have them outside South Sudan or inside?” he posed.

South Sudan Foreign ministry spokesman Makol Mawien echoed similar sentiments, admitting that there were ceasefire violations in the country.

“It is true there are ceasefire violations but we in government are not responsible for that. If there is anyone in government who has violated the ceasefire, then let Igad freeze his or her account,” he said.