Dr. Barnaba Marial says UN Security Council needs to know the history of Heglig [©Gurtong/ Waakhe Wudu]
By Waakhe Simon Wudu
JUBA, 19th April 2012 [Gurtong]
The UN yesterday morning has threatened to impose sanctions on Sudan and South Sudan if they did not cease from current hostilities that are now worsening humanitarian situation in the two countries.
Despite South Sudan’s position to withdraw from Heglig, the United Nations needs to listen to the history of the militarily ceased region from the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) last week, the government’s Spokesperson Dr. Barnaba Marial said.
"Well, it is a very unfortunate sort of proposed decision. I think the best thing is to get informed why Heglig has now become a "hot spot" that can even lead to imposition of sanctions,” Dr. Marial told the media in Juba.
“I think it is good that the Security Council first listens to the story of Heglig, and I think they have not listened adequately from our point of view. We would be glad to tell them about the story of Heglig which is Panthou that it is part of South Sudan," Marial said.
Prior to the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) take-over of Heglig, tensions between the two nations are now high as they resorted to war of statements with Khartoum branding South Sudan government her “enemy”.
Meanwhile South Sudan reiterated her commitment for diplomatic talks with Khartoum, on Monday Marial stated six conditions the international community should take into consideration before her withdrawal from Heglig.
“The issue of withdrawal on the government side is not an issue. It is an indication we are moving towards peace. But certain conditions must be met,” Marial said.
He pointed six conditions that were already sent to the international community; the United Nations and the African Union, (AU) he said.
1. There must be immediate cessation of hostilities along the border areas.
2. There must be immediate demarcation of the agreed upon border areas.
3. There must be immediate demilitarization in all the contested areas and deployment of international monitors.
4. There must be immediate end to the continuing of exploitation of natural resources in the disputed areas.
5. In reference to the disputed areas we would like to prefer the international court of arbitration because if we can not agree in the AU we can go for international court of arbitration in The Hague so that it's decided upon, and
6. There must be immediate withdrawal of Sudan Armed Forces from Abyei
Last Tuesday, the SPLA recaptured Heglig after repulsing the Sudan Armed Forces from the region. The International Community has so far condemned the move, calling the military occupation “illegal” and South Sudan to immediately withdraw her forces from the area.
However, South Sudan has insisted with President Salva Kiir last week warning unless the international community intervenes with equal justice on the two countries; SPLA will not withdraw and will head up to Abyei also a disputed region.
Dr. Marial has of latest reiterated that; “our statement is very clear. The government of the RSS is committed to the viability of two states….we would like to make this clear. The RSS is fully committed to negotiations and does not wish to engage in military confrontation. We are still on defensive.”
Analysts have however expressed critical economic challenges if UN meant to impose the sanction on the infant nation with one of the highest maternal, child mortality rate and illiterate population in the world.