U.N. urges implementation of agreements between Sudan and South Sudan

The United Nations Security Council called for urgent steps on Friday to implement cooperation agreements between Sudan and South Sudan, including disarmament in the Abyei area.

Maria Cristina Perceval of Argentina, August's council president, read a statement by the 15-member body that expressed grave concern at the continued challenges to implement the September 27 cooperation agreements between the two countries. The council welcomed the establishment of the Ad Hoc Investigation Mechanism to examine allegations of state support for rebel groups operating against the other state. The council also supported the creation of the African Union Border Programme Technical Team to determine the center line of the safe demilitarized border zone between Sudan and South Sudan.

The council emphasized that both parties must immediately implement the Agreement on Temporary Security and Administrative Arrangements for the Abyei Area to defuse a very volatile situation. The statement said negotiations on final status in Abyei should resume and fast action should be taken to disarm communities in the region, making Abyei a weapons-free zone.

The council called for the government of Sudan and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North to cease violence against citizens, fully respect international human rights law and engage in direct talks to stop the conflict in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile.

Additionally, the council urged the two governments maintain dialogue to continue transportation of oil from South Sudan.

The representative of Sudan expressed hope that the council would determine certain parties were at fault, condemning rebel groups like the SPLM-N.

The South Sudanese representative said the citizens of Abyei had suffered long enough and must be allowed to exercise their inalienable rights. The representative said peace was necessary for the economic, political and social coexistence of Sudan and South Sudan.