Africa: South Sudan National Day

Press Statement

Michael R. Pompeo

Secretary of State

Washington, DC

July 9, 2018

On behalf of the Government of the United States of America, we extend our best wishes to the people of the Republic of South Sudan on the seventh anniversary of their nation’s independence.

This should be a day of celebration marking South Sudan’s emergence as an independent state and the beginning of a new era of greater peace and prosperity. Instead, the conflict that broke out in December 2013 continues to impose immense suffering on South Sudan’s diverse citizens. They have already paid a heavy price for their leaders’ divisions: driven from their homes, facing life-threatening hunger, and subjected to unspeakable cruelty.

As talks among the parties continue, we remember the struggle of generations of South Sudanese for a better future. But for July 9 to be a real celebration, the fighting must stop everywhere, and South Sudanese leaders must make the tough choices to put aside narrow self-interest and put the needs of the nation first. We call upon the Government of South Sudan and all parties to the conflict to immediately stop the bloodshed and genuinely resolve their differences through dialogue that reflects the voices of a broad spectrum of society. Only when the fighting stops can South Sudan begin on a path towards inclusive economic growth and genuine reconciliation.

The United States remains a friend of the South Sudanese people. We stand ready to work with responsible leaders who are willing to deliver the peace, opportunity, and justice the people of South Sudan have long awaited.