The EAC Sectoral Council on Foreign Policy Coordination held its 12th Extraordinary Session in Nairobi, Kenya on 17th January 2014 under the Chairmanship of Ambassador Amina Mohamed, the Cabinet Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade of the Republic of Kenya.
The Sectoral Council was attended by, Hon Bernard Membe, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, United Republic of Tanzania, Hon Kakakure Laurent Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Burundi, Hon Jacqueline Muhongayire Minister for East African Community Affairs, Republic of Rwanda and Hon Asuman Kiyingi, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs/Regional Cooperation,Republic of Uganda.
The Sectoral Council deliberated on matters of regional foreign policy interests that included Common Foreign Policy Positions and the status of implementation of the Directives of the 11th Sectoral Council on Foreign Policy Coordination in regards to dissemination of the EAC report to Diplomatic Missions and Ratification of Protocol on Foreign Policy. The Sectoral Council adopted a report with clear recommendations on all the matters under the Agenda items on the Sectoral Council Meeting.
The Sectoral Council also reviewed the ongoing crisis in the Republic of South Sudan and its impact on the overall political and security situation in South Sudan,
The Sectoral Council:
1. Recalled the hope for freedom, justice and prosperity that the people of the Republic of South Sudan expressed on 9th July 2011 on occasion of the independence of the Republic of South Sudan;
2. Took note of the security and development that has been achieved in the Republic of South Sudan since independence despite serious challenges;
3. Expressed concern at the violent events that took place on the 15th of December 2013 and the subsequent escalation of the conflict and deterioration of the humanitarian situation;
4. Regretted the reported widespread atrocities, deaths and displacement of civilian population;
5. Expressed solidarity with the people of South Sudan in their distress;
6. Called on all humanitarian actors to provide all necessary assistance to all civilians and urges the government of South Sudan and all armed groups to open humanitarian corridors and robustly ensure protection of civilian population;
7. Commended the expressed commitment of both sides to engage in negotiations on a cessation of hostilities dialogue;
8. Strongly urges the parties to the conflict to expedite the negotiations in pursuit of a political solution including an all inclusive dialogue among all stakeholders concerned;
9. Commended the UN Security Council Resolution 2132 of 2013 which it notes as a prudent and timely move to complement ongoing political efforts in alleviating the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation in the country;
10. Encouraged the parties to use the IGAD process as pronounced through Communique following Extra-ordinary IGAD Summit held in Nairobi on 27th December, 2013, to resolve their differences.
11. Reaffirmed the strong commitment of the East African Community Partner States to assist in the pursuit of a speedy political solution to the crisis.
Issued this 17th of January in Nairobi, Kenya
Hon. Amb. Amina C. Mohamed, CBS
Sectoral Council on Foreign Policy Coordination;
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
REPUBLIC OF KENYA