Following is the text of a joint statement by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide, and United Kingdom Foreign Secretary William Hague.
As the Presidents of Sudan and South Sudan prepare for the September 23 Presidential Summit in Addis Ababa, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Norway call on both governments to urgently reach final agreement on all outstanding issues, as required by the African Union Peace and Security Council (AU PSC) Roadmap and United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2046 (2012). The Addis summit represents an extraordinary opportunity for Sudan and South Sudan to demonstrate, on behalf of their people, a shared recommitment to peace.
Since the AU PSC Roadmap and UNSCR 2046 were adopted, we have seen a reduction in tensions. Additionally, we recognize that negotiators from Sudan and South Sudan have made substantive progress in narrowing the gaps between their respective positions, with the help of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel and UN facilitators. Nevertheless, negotiators have several serious hurdles to overcome to resolve all of the outstanding issues. It is now imperative that Sudan and South Sudan reach agreement on implementation of the Safe Demilitarized Border Zone to improve the security situation along the border. It is also essential to finalize all issues relating to the resumption of oil production in South Sudan, which will give immediate economic benefits to both countries.
The Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North must begin direct political talks, urgently agree to and implement a cessation of hostilities, and implement previous agreements to allow unimpeded humanitarian access to Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile.
Final resolution of the outstanding issues and an end to conflict in the Two Areas will allow Sudan and South Sudan to consolidate the peace achieved by the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. It will allow both governments to focus on the economic, developmental, social, and security needs of their people. Now is the time to demonstrate courage, vision and to deliver peace, security, and prosperity for the people of Sudan and South Sudan.