Joint motion for a resolution - RC-B7-0018/2014Joint motion for a resolution

JOINT MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the situation in South Sudan

14.1.2014 - (2014/2512(RSP))

pursuant to Rule 110(2) and (4), of the Rules of Procedure
replacing the motions by the following groups:
ALDE (B7‑0018/2014)
Verts/ALE (B7‑0019/2014)
PPE (B7‑0020/2014)
ECR (B7‑0021/2014)
S&D (B7‑0032/2014)

Cristian Dan Preda, Filip Kaczmarek, Gay Mitchell, Davor Ivo Stier, Mariya Gabriel, Eija-Riitta Korhola, Tunne Kelam, Sergio Paolo Francesco Silvestris, Monica Luisa Macovei, Elena Băsescu, Eduard Kukan, Philippe Boulland, Arnaud Danjean, Roberta Angelilli, Sari Essayah, Joachim Zeller on behalf of the PPE Group
Véronique De Keyser, Ricardo Cortés Lastra, Ana Gomes, Norbert Neuser, Tanja Fajon, Liisa Jaakonsaari, Pino Arlacchi, Luis Yáñez-Barnuevo García on behalf of the S&D Group
Louis Michel, Niccolò Rinaldi, Graham Watson, Jelko Kacin, Ramon Tremosa i Balcells, Liam Aylward, Marielle de Sarnez, Kristiina Ojuland, Marietje Schaake, Hannu Takkula, Johannes Cornelis van Baalen, Angelika Werthmann, Sarah Ludford, Robert Rochefort, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff on behalf of the ALDE Group
Isabelle Durant, Judith Sargentini, Barbara Lochbihler, Jean-Jacob Bicep, Nicole Kiil-Nielsen, Raül Romeva i Rueda, Jean Lambert, Iñaki Irazabalbeitia Fernández on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group
Charles Tannock on behalf of the ECR Group

Procedure : 2014/2512(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
Texts tabled :
Debates :
Texts adopted :

European Parliament resolution on the situation in South Sudan


The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its previous resolutions on Sudan and South Sudan, in particular that of 10 December 2013 on the efforts of the international community in the area of development and of ‘state building’ in South Sudan[1],

–   having regard to the statements by Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton of 2 January 2014 and 24 December 2013 on the situation in South Sudan,

–   having regard to the statements of 16 December and 28 December 2013 by the High Representative’s spokesperson on the situation in South Sudan,

–   having regard to the Council conclusions of 22 July 2013 on Sudan and South Sudan,

–   having regard to the local EU statement of 20 December 2013 by the European Union delegation,

–   having regard to UN Security Council resolutions 2132 (2013) of 24 December 2013 and 2126 (2013) of 25 November 2013,

–   having regard to the statement of 24 December 2013 by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights urging the South Sudan leadership to curb the alarming violence against civilians,

–   having regard to the OCHA (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) Situation Report as of 7 January 2014 – Report No 8 on the crisis in South Sudan,

–   having regard to the talks on the situation in South Sudan, called for by the African Union Peace and Security Council (PSC), notably at its Banjul meeting of 30 December 2013, and by the Summit of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) held in Nairobi on 27 December 2013,

–   having regard to the statement of 8 January 2014 issued by the IGAD special envoys after their visit to Juba in order to unblock the talks between the government and the rebel side,

–   having regard to the Sudanese Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005,

–   having regard to the Roadmap for Sudan and South Sudan set out in the communiqué issued by the African Union Peace and Security Council on 24 April 2012, which is fully supported by the EU,

–   having regard to the press statement issued on behalf of the African Union by the Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, on 4 January 2014,

–   having regard to the statement issued by the IGAD Executive Secretariat on 19 December 2013,

–   having regard to the revised Cotonou Agreement,

–   having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,

–   having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,

–   having regard to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights,

–   having regard to Rule 110(2) and (4) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas the political conflict started after Salva Kiir, the country’s president and a member of the Dinka ethnic group, accused his sacked vice-president, Riek Machar, an ethnic Nuer, of plotting a coup d’état against him; whereas Riek Machar has denied attempting a coup;

B.  whereas the Government of South Sudan has arrested 11 senior politicians, including the former finance minister and the former Secretary-General of the SPLM party, over an alleged coup plot against President Kiir; whereas, on 23 July 2013, President Kiir dissolved the whole cabinet and dismissed Vice-President Riek Machar;

C. whereas the current conflict should find a democratic political solution and pave the way for democratically agreed institutions to build the new state which came into being after the independence referendum; whereas civil society has demanded a peaceful political solution to the problem;

D. whereas the parties to the conflict in South Sudan initiated negotiations on 7 January 2014 in Addis Ababa, under the auspices of IGAD; whereas the cessation of hostilities, the opening of humanitarian corridors, the issue of political prisoners and the protection of civilians will form the main agenda of the talks;

E.  whereas, despite the ongoing peace talks, instability, fighting and the mobilisation of armed forces have continued; whereas governmental forces are currently trying to reconquer the town of Bor, the last state capital still in rebel hands;

F.  whereas US envoy Donald Booth and envoys from South Sudan’s neighbours met on 11 January 2014 with Riek Machar to try to incorporate the proposals of both sides into a draft ceasefire document;

G. whereas on 8 January 2014 several dozen people held a peace march in Juba, denouncing the fighting between the president’s and the deposed vice-president’s camps;

H. whereas the current conflict, which has also taken on ethnic dimensions, has its roots in the 1991 split within the SPLM/A between the faction of Garang, the late leader of the SPLM/A with whom Salva Kiir stood, and the faction of Riek Machar contesting the leadership of Garang;

I.   whereas the UN Security Council has adopted a resolution under which reinforcements will be sent in the form of 5 500 troops and 440 police officers to increase the overall force levels of the UN mission in South Sudan;

J.   whereas on 15 December 2013 military clashes occurred between presidential guards in the military barracks in Juba; whereas fighting started spreading to the region around Jonglei;

K. whereas mass extrajudicial killings, the targeting of individuals on the basis of their ethnicity and arbitrary detentions have been documented, with at least three mass graves identified on 6 January 2014;

L.  whereas according to the UN nearly 1 000 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands of civilians have been displaced by the current crisis in South Sudan, with some tens of thousands in UN bases across the country in urgent need of basic healthcare services, clean water and better sanitation conditions; whereas the number of South Sudanese seeking shelter in Uganda and Ethiopia has risen dramatically; whereas on 14 January 2014 at least 200 civilians drowned in a ferry accident on the White Nile river while fleeing fighting in the city of Malakal;

M. whereas the active hostilities pose the main access challenge for humanitarian response operations; whereas access to food remains limited for people around the country, and distribution of basic food and nutrition supplies is needed especially in Bor and Bentiu; whereas violence and displacement have resulted in loss of livelihood, particularly affecting food sources, and this may eventually result in a nutrition crisis;

N. whereas there have recently been attacks against Nuba people, unlawful killings, mass rapes and arbitrary arrests of civilians living in the Nuba Mountains; whereas during the last two weeks of December 2013 Sudanese government militias and armed forces, supported by security elements, attacked many areas around Kadugli and Dillanj, thousands of civilians fled their homes and unlawful killings and mass rapes of women were reported; whereas this crisis risks affecting a much wider region that is already prone to instability, a fact which the international response being carried out on the ground needs to take into account at all times;

O. whereas Eastern African neighbours, including Kenya and Ethiopia, have pressed both sides to seek peace; whereas Uganda, at the request of President Kiir, has sent 1 200 troops and military hardware to secure installations such as the airport and state houses;

P.  whereas, following a UN request for assistance, the Union Civil Protection Mechanism was activated on 4 January 2014 to support South Sudan with in-kind assistance in the provision of shelter, medical material, medicine, welfare material and food;

Q. whereas the Republic of South Sudan is one of the world’s poorest and least developed countries, with 50 % of its population living below the poverty line, the highest maternal mortality rate in the world, one of the highest infant mortality rates, illiteracy at around 75 %, and only one third of the population having access to clean water; whereas food insecurity is a threat to over one million people each year; whereas in South Sudan about 80 % of all healthcare and basic services are provided by non-governmental organisations and access to humanitarian aid is still constrained by active hostilities and attacks on aid workers and assets;

R.  whereas the EU has announced that it will be providing EUR 50 million for humanitarian action in South Sudan; whereas this brings EU humanitarian assistance to EUR 170 million to date in the financial years 2013 and 2014;

S.  whereas aid agencies launched the South Sudan Crisis Response Plan on 31 December 2013; whereas OCHA has launched a consolidated appeal for USD 166 million to respond to the crisis and assist an estimated 628 000 people from January to March 2014;

T.  whereas state-building and overcoming fragility require a long-term perspective and a solid, predictable and stable engagement on the part of the international community;

1.  Strongly condemns the latest outburst of fighting in South Sudan and calls on all parties to lay down their weapons and to immediately end the violence which has caused deaths, injuries and damage among the civilian population and has displaced hundreds of thousands of people since the beginning of the crisis in December 2013;

2.  Expresses its deep concern at the recent escalation of violence in South Sudan, which is having serious humanitarian, security, political, economic, and social consequences in a country that is already fragile and volatile, and could destabilise the whole East African region; is especially worried about the ethnic dimension of the conflict; stresses that seeking power by violence or division along ethnic lines is contrary to the democratic rule of law and contravenes international law;

3.  Condemns the reported human rights violations and abuses, calls on all parties immediately to end all human rights abuses, including those affecting refugees and displaced persons, women and people belonging to vulnerable groups, as well as journalists, and calls for those responsible for human rights violations to be held accountable; takes the view that President Kiir and Riek Machar should do all they can to stop soldiers under their control from committing such abuses against the people;

4.  Urges all the parties concerned to respect international humanitarian and human rights law, as well as to grant access and protection to humanitarian agencies coming to the assistance of the suffering civilian population and to open humanitarian corridors for the delivery of supplies and equipment; notes that a number of foreign aid agencies have already withdrawn from South Sudan and that those which remain are struggling to meet the needs of displaced civilians; notes also that these aid agencies are still unable to reach many areas where it is thought that tens of thousands of people may still be waiting for help or on the move in search of such help;

5.  Urges both parties to reach an agreement and fully supports the ongoing process of negotiations in Addis Ababa, calling for an immediate ceasefire and efforts to find a way to achieve lasting peace and stability; urges the government and the rebel sides to engage in unconditional, inclusive and holistic political talks in good faith for the successful conclusion of the negotiations; welcomes the efforts of the African Union and IGAD to promote inclusive dialogue and mediation;

6.  Calls for the release of all political prisoners and the 11 political leaders currently detained, whose detention has become a sticking point in the peace negotiations;

7.  Calls on all neighbours of South Sudan and regional powers to work closely together in order to improve the security situation in the country and the region and to find a way towards a peaceful, lasting political solution to the current crisis; stresses that cooperation with Sudan in particular would represent an improvement in ties, after the civil war foes came close to conflict again in disputes over oil fees and the border in the early part of 2012;

8.  Welcomes the decision of the African Union’s Peace and Security Council to establish a commission to investigate human rights violations and other abuses and recommend ways and means to ensure accountability, reconciliation and healing among all communities; welcomes the strengthening of the human rights investigation capacity of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) with the support of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights;

9.  Regrets the decision taken by the EU High Representative to terminate the mandate of the EU’s Special Representative for Sudan/South Sudan, given the severe political unrest in Sudan and the armed conflicts; considers that, without a designated EU Special Representative for Sudan/South Sudan, the EU will be left on the sidelines of international negotiations and efforts; calls, therefore, on the High Representative to reverse this decision and extend the mandate of the Special Representative for Sudan/South Sudan;

10. Calls on the international community to honour its funding commitments to South Sudan and the region and to mobilise resources in order to respond immediately to the worsening humanitarian situation in South Sudan;

11. Expresses concern at the widespread corruption; is also concerned that such corruption harms the prospects of establishing a free and fair democracy, stability, sustainable development and economic growth;

12. Welcomes the decision to reinforce UNMISS with additional military, police, logistics and civilian staff; stresses however, that it is the state’s primary responsibility to protect civilians; welcomes the work of UN Special Representative and head of UNMISS Hilde Johnson;

13. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Government of South Sudan, the Human Rights Commissioner of South Sudan, the National Legislative Assembly of South Sudan, the African Union’s institutions, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development, the Co-Presidents of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly and the UN Secretary-General.