Clinton to urge South Sudan to fix problems with Sudan
US SECRETARY of State Hillary Clinton will highlight Washington’s concern over unresolved issues between Sudan and South Sudan during a visit on Friday to the state born a year ago from the partition of Sudan.
After spending the night in the Ugandan capital Kampala, Clinton headed for South Sudan’s capital Juba, becoming the highest-ranking US official to visit the world’s newest nation since it became independent on July 9, 2011.
During her three-hour visit the top US diplomat will meet with President Salva Kiir, whose government has yet to agree on its border with the rump state of Sudan and settle a crippling dispute on oil fees.
The UN Security Council gave the two countries, which earlier this year came close to sliding back into allout war, until August 2 to reach a deal or face sanctions.
That deadline elapsed on Thursday.
“We are encouraging both sides, South Sudan and Sudan, to effectively negotiate the differences between them,” said a high-ranking official from the US State Department.
Even while showing continued support to South Sudan Clinton “will express our continued concern about the lack of movement in the resolution of the key issues that divide the two countries”, the official said.
“These issues are oil and revenue sharing, citizenship, a disputed border,” the official added. “Both countries are experiencing economic dislocation.” Fighting at the common border brought the two nations back to the brink of war in March and April.
“It is absolute important that South Sudan and Sudan move as quickly as possible to resolve these issues. That requires political leadership and engagement of the presidents of the two countries,” the official said.
“It requires them to negotiate regularly until these issues are finally resolved,” he went on. “Consequences are quite serious for both countries. Both are heavily dependent on oil for their revenue,” he said.
“Both countries are in a non-work spiral as a result of their political differences and as the result of the cutoff in oil... Our desire is to see all of these issues negotiated out.” UN Security Council member countries this week stepped up pressure on Khartoum and Juba to reach a solution, all the more crucial given that the two neighbours are caught up in a downward economic spiral, the US official said, citing high inflation rates and an increase in oil and foodstuff prices.
Clinton arrived in Uganda on Thursday to discuss regional security issues.
On her return from South Sudan, Clinton will pass back through Uganda, which is also in the midst of dealing with an outbreak of Ebola — one of the world’s most virulent diseases — that has already killed 15 people nationwide.
Clinton’s tour is focused on the Obama administration’s new Africa strategy of promoting development by stimulating economic growth, advancing peace and security and strengthening democracy.
Clinton has now visited 104 countries as secretary of state, more than any predecessor.
She will also visit Kenya, Malawi and South Africa and finish her trip by attending the state funeral of Ghana’s late president John Atta Mills on August 10.
South Sudanese President Salva Kiir (right) and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Juba, South Sudan, on Friday. (EPA) Saturday, August 4, 2012 www.qatar-tribune.com 02 Clinton to urge South Sudan to fix problems with Sudan ‘Press Freedom Friday’ protest in Jordan AMMAN Around 500 people demonstrated in Jordan’s capital for a protest dubbed ‘Press Freedom Friday’ to denounce repression of the media and demand widespread reforms.
The protest began after Friday prayers at Amman’s Al-Husseini mosque, with a procession headed by a large banner announcing “Friday for freedom of the press.” In addition to chanting slogans in support of media freedom, demonstrators also shouted a slogan made famous by Arab Spring-inspired protests: “The people want the fall of the regime.” They also shouted in favour of regime and constitutional reform.
Zaki Bani Rsheid, deputy leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in the kingdom, told AFP: “Freedom of the press is one of the reforms we are demanding.” (AFP) Egypt’s president promises security for tourists CAIRO Egypt’s new president, Mohamed Morsi, on Friday pledged to guarantee security for tourists, whose numbers have slumped since last year’s uprising in a major setback for the country’s economy.
“After the revolution, Egyptians are intent on assuring security for all visitors,” the Islamist leader said on a visit to Luxor in southern Egypt, quoted by state news agency MENA.
“Egypt is safer than before and open to all, and Luxor will remain the capital of tourism and antiquities,” he said of the town which is rich in Pharaonic sites but has been hard hit by tourists staying away.
Morsi promised tourists visiting the temples of Luxor and Karnak “to make every effort to prevent anything that could damage tourism again.” “Here, you have security.
Move around freely and make the most of Egypt’s climate and ancient civilisation. We will do everything possible to ensure you enjoy your stay in Egypt,” he said, voicing optimism for the winter season. (AFP) AFP SANAA AN ITALIAN embassy security agent kidnapped in Yemen over the weekend was freed on Thursday in the province of Mareb east of the capital Sanaa, a tribal source and a local official said.
Alessandro Spadotto was released following ‘tribal mediation’ and handed over to local authorities, the source told AFP.
The tribal mediation was backed by the governor of the province, the source said. A local official confirmed the release to AFP.
The interior ministry had said the kidnapper from the Al-Jalal tribe seized the 29- year-old in Sanaa to press the authorities to drop charges against him in ‘cases of murder and banditry’ and offer him compensation.
Marebpress, an Internet site close to Yemeni tribes, had said the abductor Ali Naser Huraidkan also wanted the authorities lift a travel ban against him.
“We want the state to respond and cancel a circular banning me from travel,” he was quoted as saying.
According to Italy’s La Stampa newspaper, Spadotto managed to contact a member of his family by mobile text message following his abduction on Sunday.
Italian news agency ANSA had cited officials as saying that he was a member of Italy’s Carabinieri military police. It also said he was picked up while in civilian clothes in a shop near the embassy.
Foreigners are frequently kidnapped in Yemen by armed tribesmen, who use them as bargaining chips with the authorities.
More than 200 people have been abducted in Yemen over the past 15 years. The majority have been freed alive and well.
A French staffer with the International Committee of the Red Cross who was kidnapped in April in the northern port city of Hudaida was released last month unharmed.