Chinese envoy calls for humanitarian, economic assistance to South Sudan

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A Chinese UN envoy on Wednesday urged the international community to keep up humanitarian and economic assistance to South Sudan, which has just formed a transitional unity government after years of conflict.

Speaking at a Security Council meeting on the African country, Wu Haitao, China's deputy permanent representative to the UN, said that the world should help South Sudan tackle its development problems and assist the return and resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons in the country.

He encouraged expanding investment in South Sudan's agriculture, energy, infrastructure, education and medical services to help the South Sudanese people build greater capacity to rebuild their homes and resume development.

He also expressed China's appreciation for the contributions made by the UN mission in South Sudan to the maintenance of peace and stability, and said China will continue to provide assistance to facilitate the implementation of the 2018 revitalized agreement and the peace process.

South Sudan descended into conflict in December 2013 after President Salva Kiir sacked his deputy Riek Machar, which led to fighting between forces loyal to the two leaders.

In September 2018, the revitalized agreement was signed between Kiir and Machar, and on Feb. 22, the transitional unity government was formed in accordance with the deal. Machar has been sworn in as the first vice president of the country.

Wu said the political process in South Sudan has recently made positive headway, and that China welcomes the establishment of the transitional coalition government.

"We commend the leadership and courage demonstrated by the leaders of South Sudan," he said. "This marks an important step forward in the country's peace process with the active mediation by the international community, especially by the African countries and regional organizations concerned."

In this regard, he urged the international community to continue supporting the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in Eastern Africa in its role as the main player in mediation of South Sudanese affairs.

"The international community should intensify coordination with IGAD and the African Union, support their mediation efforts, and help all parties in South Sudan to build great mutual trust and show great responsibility and good will, so consensus can be reached as soon as possible on all the outstanding issues," he said.

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