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UN plans to reduce population of former protection sites in South Sudan

Displaced civilians from five villages around Kuda Payam, 72 klm west of Juba, after killing of 14 people following attacks by pastoral communities, in their area on 15 August 2018 (UNMISS Photo)
September 7, 2020 (JUBA) - The head of the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) said they are planning to reduce the residents of the displacement camps, previously called e Protection of Civilians (POC) sites

On 4 September, David Shearer announced the withdrawal of UNMISS troops from the POC sites across the country to be under the control of the government security forces.

On Monday Shearer met with President Salva Kiir to discuss UNMISS plans to reshape the now called IDPs cams, according to a statement released by the press unit of the South Sudanese presidency after the meeting.

"Speaking to the media after the meeting, David Shearer said that the UN protection camps are highly congested, and therefore the UN is planning to reduce the population at the sites to curb the spread of coronavirus," further said the statement.

In his press conference of last week, the UN envoy the COVID 19 continues to hit the country before to add that the residents of the POC sites "live closer together so therefore the risk of spreading is a bit higher".

However, he stressed that people in South Sudan die more from malaria than the new coronavirus.

"While we are seeing cases (of coronavirus) in the POC sites, we are not seeing a mass death rate or anything like that. In fact, we are seeing more deaths, at the moment, from malaria and malaria-related issues than we are from COVID".

The statement said that the head of the peacekeeping mission said that there is an improvement in the security situation in Jonglei State.

(ST)