U.N. Security Council to vote on South Sudan arms embargo, sanctions

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The United Nations Security Council is due to vote on imposing an arms embargo against South Sudan.

This comes less than a week after rival leaders signed yet another peace deal, which was violated within hours.

The U.S. has tabled the resolution, hoping it will pressure South Sudan to end the violence and killings, once and for all. The American plan also calls for an arms embargo and for extending sanctions against South Sudan for at least another year.

But not all Security Council members support such a move.

Russia, China and Ethiopia believe sanctions will only jeopardise the latest peace negotiations.

Mediated by regional bloc IGAD, those talks have resulted in an agreement that would see opposition leader Riek Machar return to his post as Vice President.

However, the U.S. and its European allies have pointed out the fragility of that deal, and maintain that maximum pressure is needed to resolve the situation.

The U.S. has long been South Sudan’s biggest aid provider. It was also a major backer of the country’s 2011 secession from Sudan.

But with the civil war now in its fifth year and after countless failed ceasefires, donors are running out of patience.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed and millions displaced as the war in South Sudan drags on. The country is currently ranked as Africa’s biggest refugee crisis.

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