UN peacekeeping chief calls for South Sudan arms embargo

United Nations peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous pushed the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday to impose an arms embargo on South Sudan and to blacklist more rival leaders in the war-torn country, where he sees little prospect of a political solution.

As the world’s newest state marks four years of independence from Sudan, Ladsous briefed the council behind closed doors after the United Nations accused government forces of sexually abusing women and girls and reportedly burning some alive.

“This situation is absolutely appalling,” Ladsous told a small group of reporters before briefing the 15-member Security Council. “What really should be looked at is a possibility of more sanctions towards more leaders.”

“There should be a decision about an arms embargo because it is really completely questionable that the very meager resources that the country has go into buying more weapons,” he said (from Reuters).

There has been consensus among aid agencies operating in South Sudan for some time that the only way to stop the insanity is to prevent the country spending its tiny income on weapons. The problem, of course, is that the creation of South Sudan was championed by American politicians intent on giving Khartoum a bloody nose. And that still seems to be their priority. So people like Susan Rice, now Barack Obama’s national security adviser, seem to be the barrier to progress.

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