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UK warns against travel to South Sudan

Thursday July 26 2018

South Sudan

Women march carrying placards with messages demanding peace and their rights, on the streets of South Sudan's capital Juba on July 13, 2018. PHOTO | BULLEN CHOL | AFP 

JOSEPH ODUHA
By JOSEPH ODUHA
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JUBA

The UK government has warned its citizens against traveling to South Sudan over insecurity.

A statement issued by the Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) cited security concerns emanating from several factors related to fighting between rebels and government forces.

It noted that fighting was continuing in South Sudan despite the ceasefire agreement and worsening economic crisis.

The statement further warned that the ongoing region-led peace process could worsen the instability in the young nation.

"Further deterioration in the security situation remains a real possibility and could be prompted by a number of factors, including developments in the ongoing region-led peace process and the fragile economy," the statement said.

"FCO advised against all travel to South Sudan. If you are in South Sudan, you should leave if it's safe to do so."

CURFEW
It went on to say that there were daily reports of fighting between armed groups across the country and regular reports of serious criminality in Juba.

"There is no official government curfew in Juba, but the British Embassy and most international organisations observed a self-imposed curfew, timing of which changes in response to the situation," it added.

Further, the FCO statement advised the British nationals in Juba to remain vigilant, monitor the local media and stay in a safe location.

The South Sudanese authorities were not immediately available for comment.

ACCORD SIGNED

The war in South Sudan erupted in December 2013 after President Salva Kiir accused his former deputy Riek Machar of plotting a coup.

Yesterday the two leaders signed a power-sharing deal hoping to end the civil war that has already killed tens of thousands of people and forced millions from their homes.

"Salva Kiir will continue as president of South Sudan and Riek Machar will be the first vice president," Sudanese Foreign Minister Al-Dierdiry Ahmed said at a ceremony held in Khartoum to sign the accord.