Clinton urges the two Sudans to resolve differences over oil
UniteD States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday urged leaders of South Sudan and their counterparts in the north to quickly reach agreements on oil revenue and other pressing issues to resolve festering differences that threaten to re-ignite conflict between the countries.
Mrs Clinton flew to South Sudan’s capital of Juba for a brief visit to stress the urgency of ending disputes with Sudan over oil and territory, which have led to clashes between the two nations which many fear could harm the 2005 peace deal that ended what was then Africa’s longest-running civil war.
“While South Sudan and Sudan have become separate states, their fortunes and their futures remain inextricably linked,” Mrs Clinton said. “Now it is urgent that both sides follow through and reach timely agreements on all outstanding issues. The people of South Sudan expect it.”
The two countries had faced a UN Security Council deadline on Thursday to reach agreement on the issues or face possible sanctions, but the council deferred action until at least next Wednesday.
Mrs Clinton urged the two sides to reach an interim agreement on oil revenue sharing so income would start flowing again. “A percentage of something is better than a percentage of nothing,” she said at a news conference with Nhial Deng Nhial, South Sudan’s foreign minister.
Mr Nhial said his government wanted the US to continue its support and to exert pressure on Sudan to accept the proposals South Sudan has made. Clinton had earlier met South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir.
About two million died in the war that raged from 1983 to 2005.
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