Children drowned, women killed in South Sudan intercommunal violence

By Okech Francis

Three children drowned and three women were also shot dead in an intercommunal violence in South Sudan’s Jonglei State.

The violence, in Baidit Payam, North East of Bor, perpetrated by cattle raiders suspected to have swooped from neighboring Pibor Administrative Area left about 32 people dead.

It occurred on Sunday leaving 26 people injured and many others unaccounted for, the United Nations Children’s Fund said in a statement today.

“Children are paying the heaviest price of the continued Sub-National violence in South Sudan,” UNICEF said while expressing deep shock at the incident.

“Reports of looting and burning of civilian properties and disruption of humanitarian services are alarming, and an obstruction of women and children’s ability to live without violence and to safely access services.”

The United Nation’s Mission in South Sudan said the attack in Baidit “alleged to have been carried out by armed Murle elements” resulted in civilian casualties and temporary displacements.

“According to preliminary reports, some 32 people from the Dinka Bor community were killed that include three women killed by gunshots and three children who reportedly drowned in the river while fleeing and at least 26 others were wounded, including women and children,” UNMISS said.

“The attackers also burned down at least five houses and looted properties of the civilians. Reportedly, people fled seeking shelter in nearby bush areas and some are currently unaccounted for.”

The mission urged “all efforts must be made to restore calm, refrain from engaging in further violence and to promote peace and reconciliation.”

“Any surge in subnational violence will have a devastating effect on communities that have already been impacted by flooding, the COVID-19 pandemic and recurring conflict,” it said.  

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