Home | News    Tuesday 6 September 2011

UN report: 1,500 killed and 73,000 displaced in S. Sudan conflicts

By Julius N. Uma

September 5, 2011 (JUBA) - Repeated waves of inter-communal violent conflict and rebel activities in South Sudan have led to the deaths of more than 1,500 people and the displacement of over 73,000 in recent months, says a recent UN report.

Soldiers and armed civilians mix in the market, Jonglei state (Allvoices)

It was released by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) and conducted by the inter-agency assessment teams and local authorities between 29 August and 1 September. 

The team focused on people displaced from South Kordofan state and the recent inter-communal fighting in Jonglei, between the Murle and Luo Nuer, which left over 640 people dead, hundreds injured and several children abducted.

According to the report, however, the overall security situation in South Sudan remained relatively calm during the week, amidst reported incidences of tension.

“Humanitarian actors focused on responding to those affected by inter-communal fighting in Jonglei, as well as persons displaced into South Sudan from South Kordofan,” the report says.

In September 130 UN peacekeepers and two UN military liaison officers were reportedly deployed in Pibor county, Jonglei state to counter a possible reprisal attacks in the aftermath of the large-scale inter-communal attack on 18 August.

“The peacekeepers will remain on the ground for 14 days and will conduct short distance patrols during that time. Several daily low-flying UNMISS flights are also patrolling areas of possible inter-communal tension in Jonglei,” says the UNOCHA report. 

An integrated team of military and civilians from the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) have also reportedly been deployed within the state’s Uror county to monitor the situation and work with local authorities to avert further uprisings.

Humanitarian agencies, the report revealed, will provide emergency relief to 3,800 persons displaced in the Motot district of Uror county; and 10,680 persons in the villages of Karam and Pulchoul.

The UN has also expressed deep concerns over continued tension in North Sudan’s Blue Nile state, citing an indiscriminate bombing incident, which reportedly occurred east of Kurmuk on the border with Ethiopia from 1-2 September, as well as clashes in Damazine, the state capital.