Civilians flee fighting at a United Nations base in South Sudan. (Photo: Agencies)
UNITED NATIONS, May 30 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations Security Council on Thursday decided to extend an arms embargo and sanctions against South Sudan for another year until May 31, 2020.
Resolution 2471 was adopted by a vote of 10 in favor with five abstentions, which were from three African countries in the Council, Russia and China.
The measures renewed for another year also include an asset freeze and global travel ban slapped on eight South Sudanese nationals for their role in fueling the war.
A resolution needs nine votes to pass the 15-member Council and no vetoes by the permanent members -- the United States, Russia, China, France, and Britain.
Jerry Matjila, South Africa's permanent representative to the UN, said given the political process in South Sudan, "sanctions are not helpful at this time."
He appealed to the Council to heed and support efforts being undertaken by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union (AU) in South Sudan.
Warning against external pressures that "can aggravate volatile political processes," he emphasized that making peace is neither easy nor linear.
He called on all parties to improve the humanitarian situation in South Sudan, which remains precarious.
Russia and China, which abstained in the vote last year to impose the arms embargo, made clear their positions had remained unchanged.
Yao Shaojun, minister counselor and political coordinator of China's permanent mission to the UN, told the Council that the political process in the country "has made significant progress" since 2018, demonstrating the parties' resolve and goodwill.
"The Council should send positive messages to support African Union and IGAD efforts," he said.