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Continued impunity following grave human rights violations in South Sudan: UN

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January 16, 2017 (JUBA) – Grave human rights violations and abuses, including killings and gang rapes as well as serious violations of international humanitarian law were committed in Juba during and after the fighting that occurred between 8 and 12 July 2016, according to a new report released by the United Nations on Tuesday.

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Thousands of civilians fleeing violence seek shelter at a UN compound in Jonglei state capital, Bor (Photo: UNMISS/Hailemichael Gebrekrstos)

According to the newly released UN report, six months after the violence there remains widespread impunity as violations continue unabated.

“Information documented and verified by the Human Rights Division suggests that hundreds of people including civilians were killed and many more wounded during the fighting in various areas of Juba,” the report, documented by the UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and the UN Human Rights Office, partly reads.

“Moreover, UNMISS documented 217 victims of rape, including gang-rape committed by SPLA, SPLM/A-IO and other armed groups during and after the fighting between 8 and 25 July,” it added.

Testimonies from victims and witness’ accounts, the report says, showed that most cases of sexual violence were committed by South Sudan army, police officers and security services agents.

It further stressed, “The belligerents blatantly ignored international human rights law and humanitarian law.”

In various reports released last year, the parties involved in the South Sudanese conflict were, on several occasions, implicated in serious human rights violations and abuses, including targeting civilians along ethnic lines as well as violence against women and children.

On one occasion, the report says, women and girls were ordered to cook for the soldiers at checkpoints when their friends or family members were raped. There were also several arrests of Nuer men reportedly made and the whereabouts of some of them unknown.

“The fighting that erupted in July 2016 was a serious setback for peace in South Sudan and showed just how volatile the situation in the country is, with civilians living under the risk of mass atrocities,” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said.

At least1.4 million South Sudanese have fled to other countries and another 1.8 million are displaced in their own country, he added.

Zeid reminded government of its obligation to protect the rights of all South Sudanese and bring to an end the desperate suffering of the people.

The report, however, emphasizes the need for accountability and justice for all human rights violations, further urging the Transitional Government of National Unity to take action to “break the cycle of violence and impunity” and take steps to fully support the prompt establishment and operationalization of the Hybrid Court for South Sudan by the African Union.

The report also recommends that the state ensures that all victims of human rights violations and abuses, as well as violations of international humanitarian law, have access to an effective remedy, just and fair reparation, including compensation and rehabilitation.

(ST)

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  • 17 January 07:26, by Tilo

    UN you always publish the report, What else have you done to improve the situation. I thought resolving the problem is part your role. No TGNU in SS, Is Kiir, Jieng and associates who are running the country. You have been talking of stablishing Hybrid court for months now, nothing happened the same to Regional Force, now RPF is denied entry to SS again. You should know who your dealingSS with

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  • 17 January 07:41, by Kush Natives

    from 8, july 2015, last two years! What made it effective today then? NGOS are making up mind their minds, because are suspended from operating wherever they want? This country belong to people in which are habiting it. So, if those fools called themselves UN don’t get it___then they all must be labeled as terrorist in their hideout or wherever they operate period!

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    • 17 January 08:01, by Midit Mitot

      UN and your partners, you should be specific when publishing your reports,when the war erupted in Juba on 8-12 July, those few SPLA-IO were busy defending their leaders while SPLA-IG were busy murdering civilians, rapping ladies even international ones, looting and robbing markets, especially Custom and Jebel markets. Why don,t you be sincere on your report always you are messing things?

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    • 17 January 14:21, by Mun Loal

      I couldn’t any changes in Juba if Salvatore Kuethping still in power as president of the Republic of South Sudan, unless his head is brought to General Gatwech. This is were all 64 tribes will enjoy peace and love.

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  • 17 January 07:57, by Hitler Alive

    The report is to some extent shallow. it concentrates on a preset minds on tribal line.
    Imagine I am a Monyjang- Colonially known as Dinka- and had 12 members from my immediate family missing to date. 7 of them were university students from UoJ, 3 teen girls and 2 elderly women. All were living and lastly seen on 6 before their house was raid and disappeared at Jebel Kujur.
    I am disheartened.

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  • 17 January 09:08, by Mading IronKing

    If we always expect someone else to hammer the logic of our mistake between us then colonization and slavery are in the backyard.
    The UN report seems authentic thou murky,I believe this report was interchanged for genocide propaganda per see.
    War has consequences, Let’s sit down.

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  • 17 January 12:11, by Eastern

    The UN which South Sudan is a member has been defeated by the tribal kleptocrats in Juba. It’s time now to let South Sudanese take on each other with the fittest remaining at the end of it all. The world is fed up with South Sudanese!!!!

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    • 17 January 16:53, by Naath

      This UN of Obama and Susan Rice has been bias in it reporting since the begining of the war. How easy for the small unit of soldiers that are being attacked on the ground and being attacked from air by 7 gunships to rape?

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