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Red Cross staff killed in war-torn South Sudan

September 9, 2017 (JUBA) – A staff of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was on Friday killed in South Sudan as he delivered aid to the needy civilians, the organization said Saturday.

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South Sudan Red Cross demonstrating in Bor how they evacuate victims from conflict in Jonglei state, May 6, 2013 (ST)

The agency, in a statement, said it was “shocked” and “dismayed” after Lukudu Kennedy Emmanuel, a driver, was killed when unknown people shot at an ICRC’s convoy of nine trucks and one vehicle.

"We are shaken and distraught by the killing of our colleague who was traveling in a convoy of vehicles which were clearly marked with the Red Cross emblem. In addition, all parties to the conflict in the area had been duly notified about our presence," said François Stamm, ICRC’s head of delegation in Juba.

The convoy was returning from an assistance operation in Western Equatoria state, the agency further stated, adding that it is still assessing the implications of this killing on its operations in the area.

More than 80 aid workers have been killed in South Sudan ever since the conflict started in 2013. This year alone, 16 aid workers have died.

Intentional attacks against humanitarian relief personnel, under international humanitarian law, may constitute war crimes.

Meanwhile, ICRC has appealed to all the parties involved in the South Sudan conflict to protect civilians and respect aid workers.

Ten of thousands of people have been killed and more than two million displaced in nearly four years of the conflict in South Sudan.

(ST)