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UN, US call for probe into attack on their officials in South Sudan

UN, US call for probe into attack on their officials in South Sudan

South Sudan

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has condemned the indiscriminate shooting attack on a senior United Nations agency official in South Sudanese capital Juba on Thursday.

“Such an act constitutes a grave violation of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) between the Government of the Republic of South Sudan and the United Nations,” UNMISS said in a statement on Friday.

It called on the South Sudanese authorities to investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to account.

Such an act constitutes a grave violation of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) between the Government of the Republic of South Sudan and the United Nations.

The statement didn’t give any further details of the attack.

The attack on the UN official must have occured around the time when five soldiers of the Sudan’s People Liberation Army (SPLA) were killed on Thursday night during clashes with rival forces SPLA-IO, two armies led by the President and First Vice President respectively.

The U.S. Department of State spokesperson has also confirmed an attack on U.S. embassy vehicles which were fired at while driving near the presidential palace by the army on Thursday night in Juba.

John Kirby said no one was hurt and they expect the South Sudanese government to “investigate and hold accountable those responsible.”

UNMISS condemned in the strongest terms the resurgence of violence in the country calling on all parties to put an end to the ongoing fighting and refrain from inflicting further violence against innocent civilians.

The Special Representative of the Secretary General and head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan, SRSG Ellen Margrethe Loej, also urged all parties on the eve of the country’s fifth independence anniversary to cease fire and to focus on the implementation of the peace agreement.

Friday Gunfire

South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and former rebel leader and First Vice President Riek Machar have called for calm after there was heavy gunfire on Friday afternoon at the presidential palace in the capital Juba.

The shots were heard from where President Salva Kiir and Vice President Machar gathered for a press conference.

“What happened outside (the presidential palace) is something we can not explain,” President Kiir told the media gathered for the briefing, calling for calm.

“This is a very unfortunate incident and none of us knows what happened,” Machar also said.

They both called on the people to ignore the gunfire and go about with their normal duties.

For now there is relative calm in the capital.

The United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said on Friday that he is deeply alarmed by the fighting describing it as “yet another illustration of the parties’ lack of serious commitment to the peace process.”

He called on President Salva Kiir and Vice President Riek Machar to put an end to it and discipline the military leaders responsible for the fighting which “represents a new betrayal of the people of South Sudan.”