GENEVA, Switzerland: Since it began in December 2013, the conflict in South Sudan has forced over two million people from their homes. For those living in the east of the country, the refugee camps in Ethiopia’s Gambella Region offer the best sanctuary. “I arrived with my family after eight days of walking. We didn’t have food or animals, so we were forced to sell our clothes to buy milk to survive. We decided to come to Ethiopia where we could have our basic needs met and can get education for our children,” explains 20-year-old Sarah, whose third child received medical treatment at the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) clinic in the Kule refugee camp. “We can have a life here, but we plan to return to South Sudan as soon as the situation is better.” For most, a permanent
JUBA, South Sudan: The Government of Japan has contributed US $1,000,000 for the mine action project “Enhancing the Humanitarian Mine Action Programme in South Sudan”. Over the past six years, Japan has contributed over US $14 million to mine action operations in South Sudan, enabling the clearance of 3,034,713 sqm of land, the removal of 20,180 explosive hazards and the delivery of Mine Risk Education to 140,800 people, including 91,144 children. We admire Japan’s strong initiative and vital support for global mine action activities and for UNMAS Decades of civil war and continued conflict has littered vast areas of South Sudan with explosive hazards. Despite the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities signed by the Government of South Sudan and opposition parties in
CAPE TOWN, South Africa Parliamentarians were well-placed to build bridges that turned country boundaries into open hearts reaching out to welcome those forced to seek refuge or a second home and it was important and urgent to strengthen inter-parliamentary cooperation and the global regime for migrants and refugees. “Without migration, most societies would never have achieved their current level of development,” said National Assembly Speaker Ms Baleka Mbete, during her address to the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly’s General Debate . The three-day General Debate, which ends today, is about “Strengthening the global regime for migrants and refugees: the need for evidence-based policy solutions”. Parliaments, she said, should ensure there were mechanisms to
JUBA, South Sudan: Over 24 thousand or 44% of refugee children under the age of 5 in South Sudan suffer from growth retardation or stunting, according to a nutrition survey findings published by UNHCR today. The survey which was conducted among refugee children under 5 years old in 8 refugee camps and settlements across South Sudan in December 2017 revealed that 6.2 per cent or 3,391 out of the total of 54,172 refugee children under 5 years old were suffering from acute malnutrition. Although below the emergency threshold of 15%, 6.2% prevalence indicates poor nutrition status of refugee children. The survey also revealed that 48% or 26,000 of refugee children were suffering from anaemia. Overall nutrition status of refugee children has improved as compared to previ...
GENEVA, Switzerland: On 23 February Pope Francis has called for a worldwide day of prayer and fasting for South Sudan and The Democratic Republic of Congo; two countries plagued by conflict, unrest and famine. The call is heeded by the World Council of Churches and all are encouraged to join in the prayer. For the South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC), the announcement from the Pope is good news: “This is actually the second time he calls for a prayer for South Sudan. It means a lot to know that we are not alone in our suffering and pain. The ecumenical world is with us on our journey towards peace and reconciliation”, says Fr James Oyet Latansio, SSCC general secretary. It has been a turbulent time with man-made hunger and famine, where especially women and chi
YAMBIO, South Sudan: More than 300 children, 87 of them girls, were released by armed groups in South Sudan today, beginning a process that is expected to see at least 700 children freed in the coming weeks. It was the first release of children by any armed groups in South Sudan in more than year. “This is a crucial step in achieving our ultimate goal of having all of the thousands of children still in the ranks of armed groups reunited with their families,” said Mahimbo Mdoe, UNICEF’s Representative in South Sudan. “It is the largest release of children in nearly three years and it is vital that negotiations continue so there are many more days like this.” Some 215 children were released by the South Sudan National Liberation Movement (SSNLM), which in 2016 signed
GENEVA, Switzerland: UNHCR resumed its assistance to refugees in Lasu settlement located 32 km from Yei town on the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, after it became accessible last week. “UNHCR team undertook a mission to Lasu last week and we were able to assess the situation around Lasu refugee settlement and understand the damage the settlement and refugees have sustained since our last visit there in June 2016,” UNHCR Representative in South Sudan Johann Siffointe said, adding “the mission was possible thanks to the establishment of UNMISS’ presence in Yei town.” We were able to assess the situation around Lasu refugee settlement and understand the damage the settlement and refugees have sustained since our last visit there in June 2016 While meetin
JUBA, South Sudan: The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has informed parties involved in the conflict in South Sudan that it can facilitate any potential release of persons detained in relation to the conflict. The overriding aim is to alleviate the suffering of people whose lives have been disrupted by conflict Following the signature of the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, Protection of Civilians, and Humanitarian Access, the ICRC has confirmed its readiness to act as a neutral intermediary by sharing an offer of services with the parties to the conflict. The Agreement mentions the ICRC as a facilitator for the release of persons deprived of their liberty in relation to the conflict. “The ICRC has a long standing record, as neutral intermed