August 22, 2011

South Sudan Clashes In Recent Days Leave 600 Dead! :/

The Telegraph UK
written by Staff
Tuesday August 23, 2011

The UN mission in the country, known as UNMISS, has reported deadly tribal clashes in recent days in South Sudan, signaling instability just weeks after the region gained independence from Khartoum.

UNMISS said that the fighting had possibly displaced more than a quarter of a million people.

"This cycle of violence must stop," said Hilde Johnson,UN special representative in South Sudan.

"That so many people have been killed and injured again in such wanton destruction is unacceptable," she said.

"I urge restraint by both sides of this tragic conflict. Reconciliation efforts are now urgently needed."

The fighting in the region is often sparked by disputes over cattle - a vital part of the indigenous economy.

The statement said at least 600 people were killed and that UNMISS had unconfirmed reports of 750-985 people wounded.

Local reports received by UNMISS suggest that between 26,000 and 30,000 cattle were stolen during the attacks and many homes destroyed, the mission said.

State authorities told UNMISS that more than 250,000 people have been displaced by the fighting in villages in Uror county, Jonglei state, while nearly 200 people may have been abducted.

Ms Johnson also condemned the looting and destruction of humanitarian facilities in South Sudan.

"The humanitarian impartiality of such facilities must be respected by all," she said.

The north and south split on July 9 in line with the results of a January referendum on southern independence required under a 2005 peace that ended decades of north-south civil war.

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