Clinton honours Uganda rights group, calls for Sudan deal

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Friday paid tribute to a Ugandan human rights coalition working for gay rights, hours after a brief stop in Juba where she called for a compromise deal between the rival two Sudans.

Visiting the Ugandan capital Kampala, she awarded a prize to the "brave men and women" in a Ugandan rights coalition working to block a controversial bill that would set draconian punishments for homosexual acts.

"It is critical for all Ugandans -- the government and citizens alike -- to speak out against discrimination, harassment, and intimidation of anyone," Clinton said. "That's true no matter where they come from, what they believe, or whom they love."

The top US diplomat, after a meeting with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, gave the group "who are standing up for universal human rights in Uganda" the State Department's Human Rights Defenders Award.

Clinton said Uganda's Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law was "heroically standing up for human rights and setting an example for how civil society can work together in common cause."

On a seven-nation Africa tour, Clinton also Friday visited South Sudan's ramshackle capital Juba, where she warned the newly separated Sudan and the South to put aside bitter differences and strike a deal to restart the oil production that is key to their economies.

Sudan and South Sudan "will need to compromise to close the remaining gaps between them," Clinton said, after meeting South Sudan's President Salva Kiir.

"It is urgent that both sides, north and south, follow through and reach timely agreements on all outstanding issues, including oil revenue sharing, security, citizenship and border demarcation," she added.

South Sudan's government has yet to agree on a raft of issues with Sudan that were left unresolved after they split in July 2011, including border demarcation and contested areas in oil-rich regions.

Long running African Union-led talks in the Ethiopian capital have so far failed to produce a deal, with Khartoum rejecting Juba's offers and demanding that border security be ensured before any economic accord.

The UN Security Council had given the two countries, which earlier this year came close to a return to all-out war, until Thursday to reach a deal or face sanctions.

At independence, landlocked South Sudan took with it two-thirds of the region's oil, but the pipelines and processing facilities remained in Sudan.

In January, Juba cut off all oil production, even though oil provides some 98% of its revenue, crippling the economies of both countries, after accusing Khartoum of stealing its crude.

"You have made your point, you have brought Sudan to the negotiating table," Clinton said, standing alongside Foreign Minister Nhial Deng Nhial, stressing the importance of getting the oil to start "pumping again."

"An interim agreement with Sudan over oil production and transit can help address the short-term needs of the people of South Sudan, while giving you the resources and the time to explore longer-term options."

"There must always come a point where we look forward and recognise the need to stop fighting over past wrongs so we can build toward a new future," she said.

Clinton spent around three hours in the steamy heat of Juba -- a rapidly growing city largely made up of simple tin-roof huts -- before flying to Kampala.

There she also met with Uganda's military intelligence officials, who are working alongside 100 US Special Forces troops in the hunt for Joseph Kony, the leader of the fearsome Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels.

Clinton is due to travel to Kenya on Saturday, where she is slated to meet with both Kenyan leaders and officials from Somalia's government, which is preparing to end its mandate later this month.

One person was killed in a grenade attack in a Nairobi suburb late Friday, police said, the latest in a string of blasts in Kenya since its troops invaded southern Somalia to crush Al-Qaeda linked insurgent bases there last year.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • US ambassador recovers from knife attack praised by N. Korea
    US ambassador recovers from knife attack praised by N. Korea

    The US ambassador to South Korea, Mark Lippert, was recovering from surgery Thursday after having his face and arm slashed by a knife-wielding activist in an attack applauded by North Korean state media. The United States condemned the "act of violence" which saw the ambassador rushed to hospital where his condition was described as stable after two-and-a-half hours of surgery that included 80 stitches to a deep gash on his right cheek. During the assault, Kim screamed a slogan in favour of …

  • Sy moves up, Villar enters Forbes list of billionaires
    Sy moves up, Villar enters Forbes list of billionaires

    Eleven Filipinos are included in Forbes’ 2015 list of richest people in the world. Filipino-Chinese tycoon Henry Sy Sr. continues to be the wealthiest man in the Philippines. The 90-year-old SM supermalls, banking and property tycoon ranked 73rd among the world’s richest with an increased net worth of $14.2 billion from $11.4 billion last year. Sy’s net worth was attributed to the continued growth of his SM Investments Corp. and his more recent venture, the City of Dreams Manila resort and …

  • New Moro rebel group emerges
    New Moro rebel group emerges

    A radical Muslim cleric trained in the Middle East and considered one of the leaders of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) has broken away from the terror group to form his own band of jihadists who are now reportedly providing sanctuary to bomb expert Basit Usman and at least five foreign militants, the military said yesterday. Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Col. Restituto Padilla, citing reports from the field, said the Justice for Islamic Movement (JIM) was …

  • US billionaire says WWII Japanese ship found in Philippines
    US billionaire says WWII Japanese ship found in Philippines

    Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen said Wednesday he had found one of Japan's biggest and most famous battleships on a Philippine seabed, some 70 years after American forces sank it during World War II. Excited historians likened the discovery, if verified, to finding the Titanic, as they hailed the American billionaire for his high-tech mission that apparently succeeded after so many failed search attempts by others. Allen posted photos and video online of parts of what he said was the …

  • World's oldest person wonders about secret to longevity too
    World's oldest person wonders about secret to longevity too

    TOKYO (AP) — The world's oldest person says 117 years doesn't seem like such a long time. …

  • Billionaire finds wreck of WWII ship in Phl
    Billionaire finds wreck of WWII ship in Phl

    Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen says he has found the Japanese Navy’s biggest warship at the bottom of the sea in the Philippines, 70 years after US forces sank it. Allen posted a photo on Twitter on Tuesday of the World War II battleship Musashi’s rusty bow, which bore the Japanese empire’s Chrysanthemum seal. The American billionaire, who has also pursued space exploration, said his luxury yacht and exploration ship, the M/Y Octopus, found the Musashi one kilometer (1.6 miles) deep on the …

  • Australian drug smugglers being taken to Indonesian island for execution - media
    Australian drug smugglers being taken to Indonesian island for execution - media

    By Jane Wardell and Beawiharta SYDNEY/DENPASAR, Indonesia (Reuters) - Two convicted Australian drug smugglers were removed from a prison in Bali on Wednesday to be taken to an Indonesian island where they will be shot by firing squad, Australian media reported. The planned executions of Myuran Sukumaran, 33, and Andrew Chan, 31, have ratcheted up diplomatic tensions amid repeated pleas of mercy for the pair from Australia and thrown a spotlight on Indonesia's increasing use of the death …

  • Ohio mom, boyfriend guilty; child emailed teacher for help

    PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (AP) — A woman and her boyfriend pleaded guilty to raping her young children and were sentenced to prison on Wednesday, a year after one of her daughters emailed a teacher for help and said she and her siblings were being chained to their beds, deprived of food and sexually assaulted. …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options