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South Sudan (Q&A - Excerpt from the daily press briefing - December 19, 2013)

Q - The United States and the United Kingdom have started to evacuate their citizens from South Sudan. Is France planning to evacuate its 160 citizens? What is your assessment of the situation in this country? Are you concerned that the clashes could degenerate into civil war?

A - We’re concerned by the continued fighting in Bor and Jonglei state, following the violent clashes that took place in Juba from December 15 to 17. According to the latest reports, these clashes have left 500 people dead and almost 800 injured in Juba, many of them civilians.

We call on the parties to cease hostilities immediately and to initiate dialogue as swiftly as possible in order to put an end to the violence. France supports the diplomatic efforts of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development, the regional organization that brings together the countries of the Horn of Africa.

With respect to our compatriots in the country (currently numbering around 60), we’ve advised them to take the available flights in order to temporarily leave South Sudan. Several flights will leave Juba today and tomorrow and should enable all French citizens who wish to do so to leave the capital. Our embassy is mobilized and is in continuous contact with our compatriots, who are being kept informed in real time about changes in the situation and the safety precautions to be observed.


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