Secretary-General condemns incidents in Abyei, urges resolution of disputes through dialogue

UN peacekeepers in Abyei, which is contested by Sudan and South Sudan. UN Photo/Stuart Price

13 November 2012 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemns the series of incidents that occurred in Abyei over the past 48 hours, resulting in the death of a United Nations national staff member and the injury of another, according to his spokesperson.

“The Secretary-General remains extremely concerned that the Abyei Area joint institutions, including the Police, have not yet been established and urges the parties to quickly address the issue,” the spokesperson added in a note to the media. “He urges the Abyei communities to return to calm and resolve their disputes through dialogue.”

The final status of Abyei, a disputed region straddling the border between Sudan and South Sudan, has yet to be determined – it is one of the outstanding issues of the so-called Comprehensive Peace Agreement which helped bring an end to the conflict between Sudan and South Sudan, before the latter's independence last year.

Previously, the Secretary-General has called on both parties to peacefully work towards resolving the matter, amongst other unresolved issues.

In the note to the media, Mr. Ban's spokesperson also said the UN chief expresses his sincere condolences to the bereaved family of the deceased staff member.

The world body currently has a peacekeeping mission in the area – the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) – which is charged with overseeing the demilitarization of the area and maintaining security.

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