February 6, 2017 (JUBA) – At least 46 children were reportedly abducted in South Sudan’s Jonglei state last year, while nearly 100 people died in raids blamed on criminals from rival communities.
- Jonglei state governor, Phillip Aguer speaks during the independence occassion July 9, 2016 (ST)
Unveiling a new report his office compiled, Jonglei state governor Philip Aguer described the unrelenting trend as “painstaking.”
“The 2016 security report [indicates] 46 children abducted, 92 innocent lives lost, 101 [people] wounded and 15,611 cattle raided by Murle armed men over the period of 12 months from January to December 2016,” partly reads excerpts from the report.
“21 incidents occurred in Twic East counties, 29 incidents took place in Duk and seven incidents transpired (sic) in Bor counties,” it added.
The report further stipulates that a total of 57 attacks blamed on raiders from Murle tribe from Boma state were recorded in total.
Jonglei state was divided into four states in 2015, largely along tribal lines. The newly-created Jonglei state is home to Bor Dinka, whereas the Murle now occupy Boma state with Anyuak, Jie and Kachipo.
The Lou and Gawaar sections of Nuer tribe occupy other states.
Despite the division of state along ethnic lines, cattle raiding and child abduction persisted. The Dinka Bor point fingers on Murle for continue raiding, accusations strongly denied by Boma state authorities, yet efforts to reconcile these rival communities hit a snag in late last year when more raids were blamed on the Murle.
Aguer vowed to pursue the path of peaceful reconciliation and rule of law enforcement, but urged intervention of other stakeholders.
“The international community, national government of South Sudan and the two state authorities have not been in position to return the stolen cattle, compensate the lives lost or reach everlasting solution to settle this conflict despite many attempts of peace conferences held either in Pibor or Bor town,” he said in a statement.
He did not reveal when the stolen children would be recovered or when long disputes between the two communities will be resolved.