UN / HAYSOM SOUTH SUDAN INTERVIEW

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26-Jun-2023 00:04:23
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for South Sudan, Nicholas Haysom, said that the “bandwidth” of the international community doesn't extend to include South Sudan. UNIFEED / FILE

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STORY: UN / HAYSOM SOUTH SUDAN INTERVIEW
TRT: 04:23
SOURCE: UNIFEED / FILE
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LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS
DATELINE: PLEASE SEE SHOTLIST FOR DETAILS

SHOTLIST:

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Med shot, exterior, United Nations flag, UN Headquarters

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“Undoubtedly, the challenge which the conflict in Sudan has posed for us is that it's pushed South Sudan off the agenda.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

3. Med shot, displaced persons

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

4. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“We often say the bandwidth of the international community doesn't extend to including South Sudan. I think it's a mistake because I think South Sudan is right in the middle of a very volatile region. We're watching a country exhibit some of the symptoms of state collapse, and if you were to compound that with a crisis in South Sudan, it would really make the region very alarming. It would potentially be catastrophic for the Horn of Africa.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

5. Med shot, displaced persons

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

6. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“It's in an economic crisis. It's extremely dependent on foreign aid as certainly as dependent as Sudan. And it's facing natural and climatic shocks, floods, and drought simultaneously. It's got a serious problem with delivery of humanitarian aid, and the fact that it's clear that we will not be able to retain the same levels of support that we've had previously.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

6. Med shot, displaced persons

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

7. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“And then it has a political challenge, which is to complete its transition, which includes very important political benchmarks it's expected to achieve, including preparations for elections and negotiating a new constitution, all within a very short period of time, and it has security challenges. I mean, South Sudan is itself challenged from a security perspective.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

8. Wide shot, tents, displaced camp

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

9. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“The immediate consequence of the Sudanese conflict on South Sudan is that it's pushed the price of basic commodities beyond the reach of most ordinary people. And this is a country in which 2/3 of the people are estimated to be food insecure.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

10. Med shot, displaced persons

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

11. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“What we have been seeing, and this is really a sight as a separate consequence, is the congestion on the northern towns and in and notably Renk and Malakal, which have begun to exhibit tensions, real intercommunal tensions as a result of competition for scarce resources in both those places and those tensions have manifested in serious conflicts and violence.”

FILE - UNMISS - 08 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

12. Wide shot, IDPs standing

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

13. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“Small triggers like a fight at the water share point can suddenly become a major mobilizer of inter-communal tensions, hostility and, in a context in which there is a prevalence of firearms, it can have fatal consequences.”

FILE - UNMISS - 14 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

14. Various shots, SRSG at Malakal Airport

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

15. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“Both the leaders have really come to doing whatever is necessary to avoid a resumption of war. But of course, bear in mind that this is a country which has had two civil wars in a decade--the decade from its coming into being as the world's youngest country.”

FILE - UNMISS - 14 JUNE 2023, MALAKAL, SOUTH SUDAN

16. Med shot, SRSG greeting, Malakal Airport

23 JUNE 2023, NEW YORK CITY

17. SOUNDBITE (English) Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General /Head of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“We have to be realistic. It's a country which is seriously challenged in many respects, but it's also a country with enormous resources, which everyone stands to benefit from if they can live in a stable and democratic South Sudan.”

FILE - UNMISS - 06 JUNE 2023, TEREKEKA, SOUTH SUDAN

18. Various shots, herds of cattle, roadside

STORYLINE:
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for South Sudan, Nicholas Haysom, said that the “bandwidth” of the international community doesn't extend to include South Sudan.

During an interview at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, Haysom said, “Undoubtedly, the challenge which the conflict in Sudan has posed for us is that it's pushed South Sudan off the agenda.”

He continued, “I think it's a mistake because I think South Sudan is right in the middle of a very volatile region. We're watching a country exhibit some of the symptoms of state collapse, and if you were to compound that with a crisis in South Sudan, it would really make the region very alarming. It would potentially be catastrophic for the Horn of Africa.”

Haysom said that South Sudan is in an economic crisis, and “It's extremely dependent on foreign aid as certainly as dependent as Sudan. And it's facing natural and climatic shocks, floods, and drought simultaneously. It's got a serious problem with delivery of humanitarian aid, and the fact that it's clear that we will not be able to retain the same levels of support that we've had previously.”

He added, “And then it has a political challenge, which is to complete its transition, which includes very important political benchmarks it's expected to achieve, including preparations for elections and negotiating a new constitution, all within a very short period of time, and it has security challenges. I mean, South Sudan is itself challenged from a security perspective.”

According to Haysom, the Sudan crisis, which began when rival militaries clashed in mid-April, has caused many ripple effects in South Sudan.

The conflict has also strained Government’s capacity to receive thousands fleeing violence across the northern border and could hobble the economy.

He said, “The immediate consequence of the Sudanese conflict on South Sudan is that it's pushed the price of basic commodities beyond the reach of most ordinary people. And this is a country in which 2/3 of the people are estimated to be food insecure.”

South Sudanese returnees comprise more than 93 percent of the 117,000 people entering the country while fleeing the continued fighting in Sudan, adding that the absorption capacity of the Government and humanitarians is under strain.

At the same time, these factors are exacerbating existing triggers and drivers of conflict across South Sudan, including in Renk and Malakal, amid increased competition over scarce resources, economic hardship, pre-existing communal tensions, and the presence of firearms.

He said, “What we have been seeing, and this is really a sight as a separate consequence, is the congestion on the northern towns and in and notably Renk and Malakal, which have begun to exhibit tensions, real intercommunal tensions as a result of competition for scarce resources in both those places and those tensions have manifested in serious conflicts and violence.”

He explained, “Small triggers like a fight at the water share point can suddenly become a major mobilizer of inter-communal tensions, hostility and, in a context in which there is a prevalence of firearms, it can have fatal consequences.”

Asked about the elections and the two South Sudanese leaders, President Salva Kiir and Riek Machar, Haysom said, “Both the leaders have really come to doing whatever is necessary to avoid a resumption of war. But of course, bear in mind that this is a country which has had two civil wars in a decade--the decade from its coming into being as the world's youngest country.”

The Special Representative concluded, “We have to be realistic. It's a country which is seriously challenged in many respects, but it's also a country with enormous resources, which everyone stands to benefit from if they can live in a stable and democratic South Sudan.”
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