Letter to the UK Government to redouble efforts in South Sudan

5 January 2018

Baroness Cox was among 32 Peers and MPs who signed a letter to the UK Government to renew their efforts to bring peace to South Sudan. After four years of the conflict, this letter is desperately needed to remind us of the ongoing situation.

Friday 15th December 2017 – Today is the fourth anniversary of the start of the conflict in South Sudan. We are writing to urge the UK government to redouble its efforts to support peace in the country. Numbers rarely tell the whole story of a conflict but the statistics in South Sudan are truly staggering: 6 million people, half of the country’s population, are severely food insecure; 1.8 million people have sought refuge in neighbouring countries, with the Bidi Bidi camp in Uganda now the largest in the world; an adolescent girl in South Sudan is now three times more likely to die in childbirth than to complete primary school.

The UK government has been at the forefront of international efforts to support the South Sudanese people. As the second-largest donor to South Sudan, the Department for International Development has funded lifesaving health, education and nutrition projects across the country. UK diplomacy, as part of the troika, continues to pressure regional governments to engage fully in the peace process.

As this conflict moves into its fifth year, we are reminded that achieving peace demands that we address the conflict’s root causes. On the ground, that means investing in local-level peacebuilding and reconciliation initiatives that enable communities to heal. Churches, traditional leaders, women’s and youth groups, and refugee communities must be empowered to influence the implementation of the peace agreement. As parliamentarians, we commit to working with our government, and the South Sudanese people, at every opportunity to help bring about a peaceful future.

Henry Bellingham MP Chair, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
Caroline Cox Co-chair, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
David Chidgey Co-chair, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
Patrick Grady MP Vice-chair, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
Nic Dakin MP Vice-chair, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
David Alton Secretary, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
John Montagu Treasurer, APPG for Sudan and South Sudan
Hilary Benn MP Chair, Exiting the European Union select committee
Stephen Twigg MP Chair, International development select committee
Mike Gapes MP Foreign affairs select committee
Ian Murray MP Foreign affairs select committee
Pauline Latham MP International development select committee
Caroline Spelman MP
Catherine West MP
David Drew MP
Fiona Bruce MP
Jeff Smith MP
Jim Cunningham MP
John Mann MP
Mark Pritchard MP
Paul Flynn MP
Sammy Wilson MP
Roger Gale MP
Stephen Timms MP
Tom Brake MP
Mary Goudie
Nick Baines Bishop of Leeds
Ewen Cameron
David Curry
Frank Judd
Richard Luce
Colin Moynihan

You can find the letter posted on the Guardian website

Find out more about the situation in South Sudan from our blog

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