UN condemns attack that killed more than 30 in South Sudan

UN mission calls on authorities to carry out timely investigations, hold perpetrators accountable

Benjamin Takpiny   | 25.01.2022
UN condemns attack that killed more than 30 in South Sudan

JUBA, South Sudan

The UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) on Tuesday condemned an attack that killed more than 30 people over the weekend in the country’s Jonglei state.

“UNMISS strongly condemns any attack on civilians and urges groups and individuals to take immediate action to avoid further escalations that will endanger vulnerable people,” said a UN mission statement.

The mission also called on authorities to carry out investigations and to hold perpetrators accountable.

They said that they are “deeply concerned” over recent reports of the attack in Baidit, Jonglei state alleged to have been carried out by armed Murle elements resulting in civilian casualties and temporary displacements.

At least 33 people, including four children, were killed in an attack over the weekend on a village in South Sudan’s Jonglei state.

Matuor Mabior, secretary general of the Bor Community Youth Association, confirmed Monday to Anadolu Agency that armed youth from the neighboring Pibor Administrative Area attacked Baidit Payam in the afternoon.

Mabior said the attackers also took away an undisclosed number of cattle.

“The number of cattle raided is not yet confirmed, but the death toll according to the information we have gathered is 33,” he said.

He disclosed that the situation remains tense, urging the state government to intervene.

“The security situation is still tense because people are still afraid of another attack, since it is not the first time that armed youth have attacked Bor County.

“There are no security personnel that have been sent to the area. The people who have been attacked are the ones protecting themselves,” he added.

- ‘Cowardly attacks’

Bor South County Commissioner Yuot Alier said that around 20 other people were also wounded in Sunday’s attack and some homes were burned.

He said the attackers left with hundreds of cattle and that two of the attackers were reportedly killed.

Tuong Majok, the acting governor of the Jonglei state, who is also the state minister of cabinet affairs, condemned the attack and urged South Sudan's government to intervene to stop the "cowardly attacks" against civilians.

In November last year, nine people were reportedly killed in two separate incidents in Bor town.

Greater Jonglei region authorities have been convening peace and reconciliation conferences to discuss the issues of killings and cattle rustling in their surroundings.

But revenge attacks, cattle raiding and child abduction in some areas persist.

The UN Mission in South Sudan said that revenge attacks and cattle-related killings remain the biggest insecurity incidents after political violence subsided in the country following the signing of a revitalized peace agreement.

In January 2021, the communities of Jonglei and Pibor agreed to a number of resolutions at a peace and reconciliation conference in the capital Juba aimed at ending the violence. The latest attack shows that the resolutions are being implemented by both sides.

The peace conference, attended by Vice President James Wani Igga, agreed to compensate the families of those killed or injured during the violence.

It also called for the establishment of local courts to handle cattle-related cases, empowering security forces to execute their duties.

The communities also agreed to carry out disarmament exercises, establish buffer zones to separate warring parties, and the deployment of forces along the roads linking the two areas. Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.