(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) r/>Washington May 06 - The United States expects to impose sanctions on individuals on both sides of the conflict in the coming days US and other diplomatic sources said.
The sanctions would involve a ban on travel to the United States and the freezing of any assets under US authority. People on both the rebel and government sides will be targeted the sources added without disclosing names.
"In the coming days" a US official said about the expected timing of the move. The other sources confirmed that the United States had already made a decision to sanction several individuals and it was now a question of timing.
News of the move came as US Secretary of State John Kerry threatened sanctions against South Sudan rebel leader Riek Machar if he spurned peace negotiations while government forces battled for control of the northern oil town of Bentiu.
Thousands of people have been killed and more than one million have fled their homes since fighting erupted in the world's newest nation in December between troops backing President Salva Kiir and soldiers loyal to his sacked deputy Machar.
UN peacekeepers have been protecting tens of thousands of civilians who sought refuge at U.N. bases for months.
On Friday top UN officials said the violence could become genocide with the country's leaders locked in a personal power struggle.
Members of the UN Security Council are also considering targeted UN measures in addition to any unilateral steps Washington takes on South Sudan.