17:02 20 December 2013
US President Barack Obama has warned that South Sudan is on the ‘precipice of civil war’ following the death of about 400-500 people due to an allegedly failed coup attempt by soldiers loyal to President Salva Kiir’s former deputy Riek Machar.
To protect US citizens and their property in the country, the United States has deployed forty-five personnel who will remain in the area until the situation improves.
Obama’s letter to the congress reads: “In recent years, against great odds, South Sudan has made great progress toward breaking the cycle of violence that characterized much of its history.
“Today, that future is at risk. South Sudan stands at the precipice. Recent fighting threatens to plunge South Sudan back into the dark days of its past.
“South Sudan has a choice. Its leaders can end the violence and work to resolve tensions peacefully and democratically. Fighting to settle political scores or to destabilize the government must stop immediately. Inflammatory rhetoric and targeted violence must cease.
"All sides must listen to the wise counsel of their neighbors, commit to dialogue and take immediate steps to urge calm and support reconciliation.”
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