January 26, 2014 (BOR) – The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) says it urgently needs $32 million to meet the immediate needs of those affected by South Sudan’s recent crisis.
At least half a million people, the UN said, are homeless as a result of the conflict where thousands have died and nearly 70,000 displaced into neighbouring countries.
At least 30 children reportedly died as a result of measles outbreak at a UN camp in Bor, the Jonglei state capital, where an overnight intervention saw 4,000 children vaccinated against the disease and polio.
“Children have survived violent conflict only to face the risk of dying in appalling conditions — and if we can’t reach them with humanitarian aid, that risk will increase dramatically,” said Dermot Carty, UNICEF’s deputy director of emergency programmes.
Numerous children, according to UNICEF, were also supplied Vitamin A to boost their immune system, as very few humanitarian agencies could access those displaced.
Several aid agencies’ properties were reportedly looted during the conflict, which saw at least three South Sudanese aid workers killed by unidentified armed groups.
Other immunization campaigns are also underway in camps for the displaced in Juba, with UNICEF and partners aiming to vaccinate 180,000 children below 15 years against measles and polio.