US, China urged to help solve Sudan conflict

May 3rd, 2012 - 1:18 am ICT by IANS  

Beijing, May 2 (IANS) A coalition of Arab and African civil society organisations have urged China and the US to help solve the conflict between Sudan and South Sudan. The two veto-wielding powers of the UN Security Council are meeting here to discuss their strategic ties.

Some 150 leading civil society organisations have written to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi ahead of their dialogue May 3-4 here at which Sudan is on the agenda, the coalition said in statement Wednesday.

The organisations, which include the Institute for Security Studies and the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, warn that recent escalation of cross-border violence between Sudan and South Sudan poses a grave threat to international peace and security.

Their plea comes as the UN Security Council prepares to vote on a new resolution regarding the conflict between Sudan and South Sudan.

South Sudan became independent from Sudan in July last year following three decades of civil war. South Sudan became 193rd member of the UN.

The organisations urged the US and China to show leadership and use their influence to encourage Sudan and South Sudan to return to the negotiating table and resolve outstanding post-secession issues.

They warn that the impending rainy season means that time is running out to help hundreds of thousands of civilians displaced by fighting, many of whom are already facing serious food shortages.

The letter sent Tuesday to Jiechi and Clinton says: “Your engagement and collaboration is crucial for the well being of the people of the two Sudans and for the region as a whole. Sudan and South Sudan are at a turning-point in their history and the next few weeks and months will be decisive.”

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