Washington, Sep 7

The US slapped sanctions on two senior members of South Sudan's government, a former official and three South Sudanese companies for undermining peace, security, or stability of the country.

According to the US State Department and Treasury Department on Wednesday, the sanctions targeted South Sudan's deputy defence chief Malek Reuben, Information Minister Michael Makuei and former military chief of staff Paul Malong, Xinhua news agency reported.

Three firms owned by Reuben, namely All Energy Investments, A+ Engineering, Electronics & Media Printing and Mak International Services, were also targeted by the sanctions, according to the US Treasury Department.

"We continue to make clear to South Sudan's leaders that they must honour their declared ceasefire, revive the 2015 Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan by engaging meaningfully with opposition parties," said the State Department in the statement.

South Sudan descended into violence in December 2013 after political dispute between President Kiir and his former deputy Machar led to fighting that pitted mostly Dinka ethnic soldiers loyal to Kiir against Machar's Nuer ethnic group.

The 2015 peace agreement to end the violence was again violated in July 2016 when the rival factions resumed fighting in the capital forcing Machar to flee into exile.

The conflict has killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions that have sought refuge in neighbouring countries.

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