Uganda President Yoweri Museveni Calls for Deployment of Regional Force, Demilitarization of Juba and national Election in South Sudan

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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has called for deployment of a regional peacekeeping force, demilitarization of Juba and national elections in South Sudan as measures to resolve the ongoing crisis in the country.

Museveni’s remarks follows a meeting with UN Secretary general Ban Ki-moon on the sidelines of the African Union Summit in Rwanda’s Capital Kigali.

He said a neutral force would pre-empty the pressures from the opposition leader and Vice president Riek Machar who doesn’t trust the protection from the national army, the SPLA.

Museveni also said mediating parties should during the transitional period ensure that there is no more fighting in Juba and help the nation work towards elections and democracy as soon as possible.

“Deal with them carefully and work towards peace and elections. Votes will force them into alliances. Democracy will force them to work together. Now they know they are not accountable to the people,” he said

In an interview with the BBC, Vice President Machar said the fighting which climaxed on July 8, 2016 in which over 270 died and thousands displaced was a calculated move to kill him. He said the Unitary government was “fragmented and split” He called for help.

Reacting to the clashes, UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon recommended to the Security Council to impose an arms embargo and sanctions to rival leaders noting that the fighting undermines the peace deal signed after the 20 months of war.

Ki-moon also said the violation of the ceasefire agreement by the two rival leaders makes the UN position very difficult and called on President Museveni, who is the guarantor of South Sudan peace process alongside the AU and Intergovernmental Authority on Development, to send out a clear unified message of no more fighting.

However, Museveni said imposing an arms embargo, sanctions on the people responsible for the violence would create a vacuum and plunge the country in to further chaos like was the case in Somalia.

“I don’t agree with the proposal on the arms embargo. What is happening in South Sudan is sectarian politics where one partisan community is fighting the other” said Museveni.