The action this weekend by National Security Service agents to block a civil society leader from
traveling to a transitional justice forum is unacceptable. This action, directed against an officially
recognized Stakeholder in the High-Level Revitalization Forum peace talks, calls into question
the Government of South Sudan’s commitment to Article 5 of the 2015 Agreement on the
Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan and the December 21, 2017 Cessation
of Hostilities (CoH) agreement. Both documents include language guaranteeing the rights and
ensuring the protection of civilians and civil society. The CoH specifically calls on the parties to
encourage civil society to support and promote the agreement.
Civil society has an important role to play in resolving the conflict in South Sudan, which is now
in its fifth year. The Government’s efforts to silence civil society are pointless and
embarrassing. We strongly urge the Government of South Sudan to work with the country’s
civil society, not against it.