Delivered by: Mrs. Amiera AlHefeiti Deputy Permanent Representative
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I thank the Special Representative, Mr. Nicholas Haysom, and Ms. Ghada Eltahir Mudawi, for their comprehensive briefings. We also listened carefully to the briefing of Ms. Lorna Merekaje. I also welcome the Representative of South Sudan, to today’s meeting.
I would like to begin by referring to the recent positive developments in South Sudan that, in our view, contribute to advancing the implementation of the Revitalized Agreement. We appreciate the efforts put toward this endeavor, including the completion of the formation of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly, the tabling of the constitution-making bill, and the launch of a consultative process to establish the “Commission for Truth, Reconciliation and Healing”. We further recognize that the signing of an agreement pertaining to transitional security arrangements and facilitated by the Republic of Sudan last April, contributes to the implementation of the Revitalized Agreement. We encourage South Sudan to continue building on these hard-won gains that advance [the country] toward a peaceful and prosperous future. We underline the importance of ensuring the full, meaningful, and equal participation of women.
We also stress the importance of continuing cooperation with regional and international organizations, such as the African Union, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and the United Nations. Such cooperation can be facilitated through efforts such as the tripartite assessment process to determine the needs of South Sudan for elections and the constitution-making process. We also appreciate the mediation efforts of the community of Sant‘Egidio to support South Sudan on its path to stability.
With regards to the security situation in South Sudan, which remains deeply concerning, we stress the importance of redoubling efforts. In particular, addressing the worrisome uptick in sexual and gender-based violence is critical to tackle this challenge, including by advancing the implementation of the joint action plan for the armed forces on conflict-related sexual violence in South Sudan.
It is also vital to address the root causes of violence, particularly the serious ramifications of climate change that further increase competition for natural resources, escalate intercommunal violence, and exacerbate the already fragile humanitarian and security conditions. This is something that we are especially mindful of, given the approaching rainy season, which is often accompanied by floods. We appreciate UNMISS’ efforts to provide the necessary support to mitigate the impact of floods. We also look forward to the Mission’s assessment of the risks related to climate change in accordance with Security Council resolution 2625, in coordination with the United Nations country team, since developing a clearer picture of environmental risks will contribute to addressing them more effectively.
As we heard today, South Sudan is in a state of profound humanitarian crisis. More than two thirds of the country’s population is in urgent need of humanitarian assistance, a situation further exacerbated by the global food crisis. According to World Food Programme, food insecurity in South Sudan has reached the most acute levels since 2011. It is critical for the international community to work together to address the humanitarian needs of the people of South Sudan. In this regard, we note the World Bank’s recent announcement of a USD 70 million grant for the social and economic empowerment of women and girls in South Sudan, including survivors of gender-based violence. Such efforts are essential to building stable and prosperous communities. The UAE commends UNMISS’ efforts to support the delivery of aid relief to those in need. We are also concerned over attacks targeting humanitarian workers and commend the Mission’s efforts to ensure their protection.
In conclusion, the UAE reiterates its commitment to support all efforts aimed at achieving unity, peace, and stability in South Sudan.
Thank you, Madam President.