Home | News    Monday 15 August 2016

S. Sudan rival forces accused of raping and killing civilians


August 15, 2016 (JUBA) - South Sudan’s rival forces killed and raped civilians, extensively looting their property, including humanitarian goods, during and after clashes that occurred in Juba last month, a New-York based rights body said.

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Arms and light weapons have been used by both warring parties in South Sudan to commit abuses (Photo courtesy of SSANSA)

In many cases, according to Human Rights Watch, government forces appeared to target non-Dinka civilians.

As a result of indiscriminate attacks, including shooting and shelling, shells landed in camps for displaced people inside United Nations bases, and in other densely populated areas in the city, killing and wounding civilians, the rights group said.

Clashes between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and the armed opposition leader, Riek Machar clashed in the capital left over 270 people dead and displaced thousands.

The rights body mainly faulted government soldiers for the multiple crimes committed on civilians in the young nation.

“A year after South Sudan’s leaders signed a peace deal, civilians are dying, women are being raped, and millions of people are afraid to go home,” said Daniel Bekele, Africa director at Human Rights Watch in a report issued Monday.

“On August 12, the UN decided to send more peacekeepers to Juba but put off a long-overdue arms embargo. The continued supply of arms only helps fuel the abuses on a larger scale,” he added.

The latest violence came barely four months after the formation a coalition government under a peace agreement signed in August 2015. The rival factions agreed to integrate their forces and establish the hybrid court.

Under the deal, however, the African Union Commission was to set up the court, with South Sudanese and other African judges and staff to be completed by October 2016.

This follows the series of documented cases of targeted killings, rapes and gang rapes, beatings, looting, and harassment, often along ethnic lines, said to have been committed several areas of the capital and its outskirts.

“South Sudanese leaders have time and again failed to end abuses against civilians, been unwilling to rein in abusive forces or ensure justice for crimes by those under their command,” said Bekele.

“There is no more excuse for delay: top leaders need to be sanctioned and an arms embargo imposed. The UN has to be more effective in protecting civilians and the AU should move ahead with the hybrid court,” he added.

Officials from the country’s two rival factions are yet to comment on the damning report.

Meanwhile, the rights body has appealed to the United Nations and its member countries to impose targeted sanctions, including asset freezes and travel bans, on those responsible for serious human rights abuses in South Sudan.

The African Union Commission and donors, it added, should proceed without delay with preparations for a hybrid court to investigate and try the most serious crimes committed since the start of South Sudan’s new war in 2013, including during the recent fighting.


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  • 15 August 2016 08:01, by Mr Point

    Why can’t the so called sovereign state develop legitimate national institutions?

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    • 15 August 2016 11:41, by Akuma

      What UNMISS forces who are raping women and girls on daily basis in Pocs in the country. Are Human Right Watch also blind to held them accountable too. We have many races/colors in UN Pocs because UNMISS forces misbehaviors.

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  • 15 August 2016 08:42, by Kerem

    This is a white lie from the Human Rights body. It has just been inserted into his mouth by USA to create confusion and prepare a ground to justify why AU Pro American forces need to be sent to Juba. US is a disgrace in the world and God will indirectly punish them through natural disasters if they do not stop feeding on human blood of innocent people

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    • 15 August 2016 16:15, by Hardlinner

      They have fucked up central africa republic and are know acting as they wish by raping minors and even going as far as forcing girls to hv sex with dogs. Who is ready for his sister to be rape by UN forces and their dogs. 10,000 plus get killed a year in america and over 2,000,000 people in prisons. Yet UN have never condemned america or propose UN forces to protect civilians in the hand of police

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  • 15 August 2016 09:28, by Akol Liai Mager

    American’s and European’s Investigation teams founded both liquids and Ware-materials that prove Iraq has had WMD!

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    • 15 August 2016 13:32, by Paul Ongee

      SPLM-IO are raping and killing dogs not women, according to the recent HRW report in New York. They closed their eyes when SPLM-IO attacked government forces, killed and raped women in Churches in Bor, Malakal and Bentiu, and opened their eyes when government forces are defending themselves so that what is seen reflected in their report.

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      • 15 August 2016 13:38, by Paul Ongee

        HRW struggled to close their eyes for years in wherever peacekeeping operations are taking place around the world until they opened their eyes only in DRC recently when UN peacekeeping forces admitted that their soldiers raped women, including 13 years old girls and got reported for the first time by the media since 1945. Wow.

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        • 15 August 2016 14:50, by Paul Ongee

          HRW struggled to close their eyes for decades (not years) in wherever peacekeeping operations are taking place around the world until they opened their eyes only in DRC recently when UN peacekeeping forces admitted that their soldiers raped women, including 13 years old girls and got reported for the first time by the media since 1945. Wow.

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    • 15 August 2016 16:26, by Hardlinner

      Akol, please don’t listen to what america feed you at public medias. The reason they went to iraq is to secure their oil wealth. Take case of DRC where there are over 20,000 UN forces on the ground. Have they stop violent in congo, no they are indeed fuelling wars and killing.UN is agent of america and west. It was invented as means of re-colonizing weak countries with resources.

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  • 15 August 2016 16:06, by Hardlinner

    Arm embargo will only hurt the government. Firstly those advocating for arm embargo do not know where rebels get their guns. It wld indeed lead to total chaos where every group will act as rebels against their opponents. It Wld not be nuer rebellion alone, but dinka will join as kiir gov. become weak and able to defend nation interest. Millions are likely going to die.

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