File Photo: A handout picture released by the Egyptian Presidency shows Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi (R) shaking hands with South Sudan's President Salva Kiir at the presidential palace in the Egyptian capital, Cairo, January 10, 2017. (Photo: AFP)
Egypt will continue to provide support and aid to South Sudan, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi told his South Sudanese counterpart Salva Kiir in a phone call on Monday.
In an official statement, the president’s spokesman Bassam Rady said Kiir called El-Sisi to express his country’s keenness on continued cooperation with Egypt in various fields, in light of the special relationship between the two countries.
Kiir also updated El-Sisi on political and security developments in his country, praising Egypt’s role in boosting stability in South Sudan.
According to the statement, El-Sisi highlighted Egypt’s support for efforts aiming to diffuse conflict in South Sudan, with the goal of consolidating security and stability.
He affirmed that Egypt will also continue to assist development efforts in South Sudan, pointing to Cairo’s strong relations with Juba.
South Sudan has been in a civil war since 2013.
Last November, Egypt sponsored the signing of a declaration of unification between two factions of the South Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) at the headquarters of Egypt's intelligence agency headquarters in Cairo.
The declaration, which supports peace efforts to end the dispute between the rival factions and stipulates the return of refugees displaced by conflict, was signed under the auspices of President El-Sisi and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.
The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) released a statement on 27 April warning that an escalation of fighting in South Sudan puts thousands of civilians at risk and compromises the peace process.