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One year after the revitalised peace agreement was signed on 12 September 2018, the meetings this week between President Salva Kiir and SPLM-iO leader Riek Machar in Juba are steps in the right direction. Trust between the political leaders is of the essence and it is important that they continue to meet regularly to resolutely take the peace process forward.
While it is positive that the ceasefire continues to hold between the signatories to the agreement, two months before the end of the extended pre-transitional period, the pace and the quality of implementation needs to urgently increase. This includes crucial tasks such as security arrangements and the number of states and their boundaries, in order to facilitate the formation of the transitional government in November.
We expect all parties to work in a spirit of goodwill and compromise, reflecting the constructive atmosphere of the talks between the leaders this week. The European Union will continue to support the process of peace for the benefit of all South Sudanese people in close coordination with the Intergovernmental Authority for Development, the African Union, the United Nations and the wider international community.