German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Thursday called for stronger efforts to pacify violence-plagued South Sudan.
“South Sudan really deserves to finally find peace after so many years of war, and press ahead with its economic development and the reconstruction of the country,” he said during a visit to the capital, Juba.
South Sudan was plunged into a military conflict when a split between President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar escalated in December 2013.
Tens of thousands have been killed and 3.8 million displaced.
Gabriel arrived in South Sudan from Uganda, which he praised for its handling of nearly one million South Sudanese refugees.
“Maybe we should also send a few delegations … from a few other European countries to see what solidarity can do,” Gabriel said during a visit to a refugee settlement in the north of the country.
The minister warned of an eventual new refugee crisis in Europe, if no mechanisms were found to distribute refugees within the EU.
“If we don’t do anything, Italy will have to open its borders at some point, because they are simply too many,” he said.
During his visit to Uganda, Gabriel also criticised US warnings to North Korea.
He said such rhetoric created concern “that we will sleepwalk into a war like in World War I, but in this case, a war which could be carried out with nuclear weapons. (NAN)