India monitoring developments in South Sudan

New Delhi, Dec 24: India Tuesday said it was closely monitoring the political developments in South Sudan and issued an advisory to Indians there to leave the African country at the earliest in view of the deteriorating security situation.

The Indian embassy in Juba was in close contact with the Indian community in South Sudan for ensuring their safety and security, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said in reply to a query on the evolving situation in South Sudan.

“We are closely monitoring the political developments and the evolving security situation in South Sudan.

“In view of the deteriorating security situation, the mission has also issued an advisory to Indian nationals to leave South Sudan at the earliest,” he said.

The spokesperson said a significant number of Indians have left South Sudan by availing commercial flights operating from Juba and also through road links, including the link to the Uganda border, which was open for public transport.

He said the mission in Juba was providing all assistance in facilitating relocation of Indians.

The mission was closely liaising with the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), particularly the Indian battalion of UNMISS, in monitoring the evolving security situation.

The mission has availed the the Indian battalion’s assistance in evacuating Indian nationals stranded in remote areas such as Bor in Jonglei state.

He said two members of the Indian contingent in UNMISS had lost their lives and one was injured during an attack on the UNMISS compound at Akobo in Jonglei state Dec 19.

The spokesperson said the role played by the Indian battalion under difficult circumstances in South Sudan has been widely appreciated.

The external affairs ministry is also in touch with the South Sudan embassy in New Delhi, which has assured all assistance of its government in ensuring safety and security of Indians and the Indian embassy in South Sudan.

Clashes erupted in South Sudan last week between two military factions. Over 500 people have been killed.

IANS