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UN condemns looting of its supplies in Unity state

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May 14, 2014 (JUBA)- The United Nations mission in South Sudan has strongly condemned looting of its medical equipments and supplies in Unity state, calling on parties to the country’s conflict to respect its properties and personal.

“Such acts violate the Geneva Convention”, the UN mission said on Monday.

According to the world body, contractors guarding its facilities in the Unity state capital, Bentiu were recently threatened and physically assaulted. Also faced with troubles, it said, were its peacekeepers called in to diffuse the situation.

Meanwhile, the mission reported heavy deployments of government and pro-government forces in both areas within Unity state, despite last week’s ceasefire deal signed between President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar.

The situation, it said, remained calm in spite of the shootings in Bentiu and Rubkona, which reportedly resulted in the airport being closed for a few hours.

“A mission patrol to Bentiu yesterday extracted five civilians and brought them back to the protection site,” the UN said in a statement, adding that more than 23,000 civilians are being protected at its site in the Unity state capital.

A new site, it said, is being built close to UN House and is expected to host some 13,000 displaced people. A new space within UN Tomping is being cleared to accommodate some 2,000 people living in overcrowded parts of the base.

Currently some 32,000 civilians are seeking protection in the UN bases in the capital, Juba, the world body said in a statement to Sudan Tribune.

Violence broke out in the South Sudan capital, Juba in mid-December last year killing thousands with over a million people displaced, according aid agencies in the country.

The United Nations has launched a massive operation to help 3.2 million people, but is reportedly $781 million short of the $1.27 billion urgently needed by mid of this year.

(ST)

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