August 2, 2014 (JUBA) – At least 227,000 people displaced by conflict in South Sudan’s Unity, Jonglei and Western Equatoria states have returned to their homes, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has disclosed.
- A woman carries water through a UN camp for internally displaced people in South Sudan’s Upper Nile state (Photo: IOM)
In a report issued Friday, OCHA said “severe flooding” was facing those internally displaced at the UN base in Unity state capital Bentiu.
“Aid workers reported growing numbers of people displaced during the crisis returning to their homes in Jonglei, southern Unity and Western Equatoria states,” partly reads the bulletin.
According to OCHA, the returnees “are the most vulnerable in the country having lost their homes, livelihoods and all belongings”.
Thousands have been killed and about 1.3 million displaced by fighting that broke out in the South Sudan capital late last year, the UN says. Humanitarian agencies have also warned of a looming famine in the country, as people failed to plant crops at the onset of rains this year.
SITUATION STILL TENSE
OCHA said the situation in Jonglei, Unity and Upper Nile states “remained tense” with shootings reported in Nasir, a strategic town bordering Ethiopia.
“[There is] youth mobilisation in parts of Jonglei. People continued to flee into neighbouring countries,” said OCHA in its weekly report.
“Severe flooding in the Bentiu Protection of Civilians (PoC) site set back some of the progress achieved, especially with regard to sanitation,” it added.
The report also highlights several health and sanitation challenges, saying latrines constructed at civilians sites have been destroyed by floods, leaving sewage to flow.