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Statement delivered by HE Ambassador Jerry Matjila
We would like to thank you for convening this meeting, and we would also like to thank Ms Wronecka for her briefing and her leadership in this portfolio.
South Africa welcomes the improvements in the security situation in Darfur. The situation has improved dramatically over the last few years and the role of the AU/UN Hybrid Mission (UNAMID) must be commended
Notwithstanding its expected drawdown set out in Resolution 2429, UNAMID must continue to ensure the protection of vulnerable civilians, especially in internally displaced people’s (IDP) camps and in the prevention of gender-based violence.
South Africa also welcomes the gains made in advancing the Darfur Peace Process and the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) and calls on all parties to continue their commitment to the negotiations process under the auspices of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel.
The council had set out through resolution 1591 to put pressure on parties which were impeding the peace process. The council recognized this as constituting a threat to stability in Darfur and the region. Further, it targeted those that committed violations related to international humanitarian or human rights law or other related atrocities, or those who violated measured agreed upon in resolution 1556.
Equally, we should also respond to the progress that is being registered on the ground, with the normalization of the situation in Darfur, which propelled the drawdown of the UNAMID Mission. It is important that as the Council we are able to recognize and acknowledge this progress through the measures imposed in 1591.
This doesn’t mean that there are no longer elements that still require our attention. We remain concerned at the continued violations of the arms embargo including the transfer of weapons to Darfur which destabilizes the situation on the ground. In this regard we urge UNAMID, in accordance with resolution 2429 to continue to provide technical and logistical assistance to the Sudan DDR Commission.
South Africa also remains concerned with the growing presence of Darfuri armed groups in Libya as further violations of the embargo could potentially fuel the conflict in the region. This undermines any progress made towards stability and lasting solutions for peace and sustainable development.
Women and children are the most affected by sexual violence which has also increasingly become a weapon of war and conflict affecting the long-term prospects for peaceful and prosperous communities. In this regard we would like to commend the government of Sudan for its efforts in trying to combat sexual violence in conflict.
I thank you.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: Department of International Relations and Cooperation.