Juba, 18th May 2018. The United Nations Mission in South Sudan says it has redeployed up to 150 peacekeepers around Unity region to boost efforts to protect civilians being deliberately targeted by warring parties.
In a statement released today the head of the UN Mission in South Sudan, David Shearer says the UN is witnessing deliberate killing of civilians as well as the sexual violation and abduction of women and children around the area.
“Our fresh deployment will enable peacekeeping troops to patrol deeper to reach remote villages where the worst atrocities are taking place to create a protective presence and deter further fighting. It will also support the reinforcement of our base at Leer where many civilians are seeking sanctuary,” he said
The statement says UNMISS peacekeepers and human rights teams have witnessed the bodies of civilians killed during the fighting left unburied, dozens of huts burnt to the ground, cattle raiding and the destruction of critical services such as boreholes, medical clinics and food stores.
“The atrocities that we are documenting are a clear violation of human rights and international humanitarian law. Two aid workers have been killed and two wounded in the past month. Those responsible must be identified and held accountable for their actions,” said David Shearer.
The Mission continues to engage with local authorities and to urge the warring parties to stop the fighting and adhere to the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement signed by all parties late last year.