Home | News    Thursday 11 August 2016

South Sudan crisis deepening, says UN emergency relief chief

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August 10, 2016 (JUBA) – The United Nations emergency relief coordinator, Stephen O’Brien has highlighted what he described as the enormous humanitarian crisis facing the world’s youngest nation and the devastating impact of the ongoing violence on its people.

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Stephen O’Brien (right), Emergency Relief Coordinator, briefs journalists on the humanitarian situation in South Sudan (UN Photo)

“People in South Sudan are not just fleeing their homes because they need food, shelter or medical care and school for their children. They are fleeing [because they] fear for their lives,” said O’Brien.

“We must protect them, and we must save their lives,” he added.

The humanitarian situation in South Susan has witnessed significant deterioration, including in areas that were once relatively stable.

Since December 2013, UN figures show, over two million people have fled their homes. Some 1.6 million are displaced within South Sudan and more than 900,000 people have fled to neighbouring countries.

Last month, however, violent clashes between the country’s rival factions led to the death of 270 people and displacing more than 40,000 civilians, before the country’s leaders declared a ceasefire.

Over the last month alone, some 70,000 South Sudanese crossed the border into Uganda as refugees, according to the world body.

Moreover, some 4.8 million people across the country are reportedly facing severe food insecurity and 250,000 children are severely malnourished as the war-hit nation battles an outbreak of Cholera.

O’Brien, also the UN under-secretary-general for the coordination of humanitarian affairs, visited South Sudan’s towns of Wau and Aweil.

While in the capital, Juba, the UN relief coordinator met South Sudan president Salva Kiir, during which he reportedly expressed dismay at the appalling reports of violations committed against civilians during fighting in recent months, including in the country’s capital, Juba.

He condemned the heinous acts of sexual violence carried out against women and girls, including by members of the armed forces.

According to O’Brien, at least 57 aid workers have been killed in the world’s youngest nation since the December 2013 outbreak of conflict.

“This is unacceptable and unconscionable. I urged the President to take immediate action to end the impunity that has prevailed to date,” said O’Brien, adding that humanitarians were risking their lives and yet they continue to be harassed, targeted and even killed.

He underscored the “extremely” difficult conditions for humanitarian workers, reiterating that they should be granted free, safe and unhindered access to all people in need, wherever they may be, and that they, themselves, and their assets must be respected.

“Humanitarians are in South Sudan to save lives and for no other reason,” said the senior UN official.

“[They are] risking their own [lives], and I am appalled that they continue to be harassed, targeted and killed,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Humanitarian Response Plan, O’ Brien said, faces a gap of $700 million, and that this will increase once the appeal is revised to reflect the needs that have arisen since the beginning of 2016.

(ST)

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  • 11 August 09:36, by Eastern

    .....the script is reading like the moment up yo the fall of Muamer Gadaffi. Kiir is indeed obstinate and doesn’t know history!

    repondre message

    • 11 August 10:31, by jubaone

      The problem is the rest of the 63 tribes who think the UN and IGAD will remove Kiir and his jienge regime. All the rest tribes must take things under their control by flushing off these scoundrels wherever they are especially in Equatoria. Bring death to their doorsteps without mercy. Do to them what they have done to the rest. Period

      repondre message

      • 11 August 15:54, by Hardlinner

        jubaone who among those 63 tribes is trying to get themselves deep shit by attacking innocents dinka civilians?. remember riek issue is none of their business. u and your uncle started your foolish nuer war and when thing got out your hand, you want to get others involved. none of those u r advocating for hv lost 100,000 of their tribes men to kiir but riek killed 100,000 bor civilians in 1991.

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      • 12 August 15:19, by Frak Cho

        Jubaone, you are making big mistake.If you talk of removal of Dinka instead of President, then you are wrong. Please think logically!

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    • 12 August 06:06, by Deng II

      For those who always think that President Kiir will be catch or harm like Muamer Ghadaffi and Sadaam Hassain. Take it from me today,its not gonna happen because Kiir is belong to largest tribe in the country compared Ghadaffi and Sadaam who both belong smaller tribe in the country they rules. Western countries are not stupid to take leadership from bigger tribe and give it to smaller tribe.

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      • 12 August 06:24, by Deng II

        - what I would assumes Western countries can do if they are so desperate to change the government, they could give leadership to Dinka person when they get one who plays their interest. But now it’s highly never happens to change the government and give it to Machar, while they pretty well awar that Dinka must not let Machar govern peacefully.

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        • 12 August 06:46, by Deng II

          All the hope that what happened to Ghadaffi and Sadaam will happen in South Sudan are hopeless. But I know it’s emboldened Riek Machar and his supporters to keeps fighting for longer, thinking that what happened in Libya and Iraq will happen in South Sudan. False, kidding yourself fool.

          repondre message

  • 11 August 09:36, by Eastern

    .....the script is reading like the moment up to the fall of Muamer Gadaffi. Kiir is indeed obstinate and doesn’t know history!

    repondre message

    • 11 August 16:03, by Hardlinner

      keep living in ur fictitious overthrow of government. the Libya u r referring to is already a failed state. so if u want the same in south Sudan, you will get it, but not in simpler way but i’m afraid u n your power lover Riek will not live to see the end. remember majority of Dinka do not approve of kiir management, but r happy to see him stay as longer as u morons support mass murderer Riek

      repondre message

  • 11 August 16:12, by Hardlinner

    where were this UN when Bashir was killing south Sudanese by the millions. why didn’t UN intervene and help millions people that would have not otherwise lose their lives. UN should have displayed same tendencies in the past to validate their claims. this just another trick employed by UN in series of espionage against people of south Sudan. UN is UNited states agent period.

    repondre message

  • 11 August 16:13, by Hardlinner

    where were this UN when Bashir was killing south Sudanese by the millions. why didn’t UN intervene and help millions people that would have not otherwise lose their lives. UN should have displayed same tendencies in the past to validate their claims. this just another trick employed by UN in series of espionage against people of south Sudan. UN is UNited states agent period.

    repondre message

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