December 9, 2012 (LONDON) - South Sudan’s army has shot dead 10 people in Wau, the capital of Western Bahr el Ghazal State, who were protesting against moving an administrative headquarters, the United Nations said Sunday.
In the late hours of Saturday the South Sudan’s army (SPLA) moved in to remove road blocks that had been created in protest against the relocation of a local council to a nearby area, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan said
Speaking to Al Jazeera, the mission’s Director of Communications and Public Information, Liam McDowall, said UNMISS had received reports that six people were killed when the army opened fire on those protesting against army dismantling the road blocks on Saturday.
On Sunday morning protesters moved in to Wau town, apparently in an attempt to deliver a petition listing their grievances speak to the Governor. Troops again fired on the crowd killing four more people, McDowall said.
Although McDowall told Reuters it was not clear whether any of the crowd were armed or if the army was provoked the BBC has reported that the UN has described the SPLA’s actions demonstrated an "excessive use of force".
According to the BBC the SPLA says it has launched an investigation.
A curfew from dawn until dusk has been imposed in Wau town and the situation remains tense, with the UN concerned that the violence could escalate.
UNMISS say they are using their offices to contact Governor Rizik Zackaria Hassan and meeting opposition groups.