UK to provide an extra £18 million aid to starving South Sudanese
Minister for Africa, Andrew Stephenson, announced an extra £18 million of UK aid on his first visit, in his new role, to South Sudan. The visit started Monday.
Andrew Stephenson who held talks Tuesday in Juba with South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir Mayardit on the progress of the September 2018 peace deal and on ways of bolstering bilateral ties between the two countries, said the aid will be given to trusted partners to help vulnerable families in desperate need.
There are currently 7 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and nearly 2 million people on the brink of famine in South Sudan, where food insecurity is at its worst level in the past 8 years, the UK government said in a statement posted on its website Wednesday.
Minister Stephenson called on the Government of South Sudan and other parties involved in the conflict to stop obstructing the delivery of aid and step up efforts to help the millions of malnourished children, families and communities get access to vital supplies, the statement added.
He also called on the Government to accelerate progress on the peace process, including security sector reform, establishing an open dialogue with opposition leader Riek Machar and delivering on the $100 million they pledged to help achieve peace.
While in South Sudan, Minister Stephenson visited the World Food Program’s warehouse in Juba to see first-hand how UK aid is helping save the lives of people who have fled conflict.
He also visited the Juba Protection of Civilian’s camp to learn about the key challenges of displacement in the country, as well as meeting with British soldiers deployed to the UN Peacekeeping mission there.
South Sudan descended into civil war in late 2013 and the conflict has created one of the fastest growing refugee crises in the world.
The United Nations estimates that about four million South Sudanese have been displaced internally and externally.
A peace deal signed in August 2015 collapsed following renewed violence in the capital in July 2016.
Under the revived peace deal of September 2018, opposition leader Riek Machar will be reinstated as Kiir’s deputy