U.S. strongly condemns recent killing of aid workers in S. Sudan

U.S. Embassy in the Republic of South Sudan | Photo: USA Embassy

November 4, 2020 (Thessherald)–The U.S. Embassy in South Sudan has strongly condemned the recent incident in which humanitarian workers were targeted and killed while carrying out their duty – delivering life-saving aid to vulnerable communities across the country.

“The U.S. Embassy in Juba joins the UN and international community in condemning the recent killings of humanitarian aid workers in South Sudan. In the past week alone, two separate attacks in South Sudan’s Jonglei State resulted in the deaths of two aid workers and injuries to three staff,” the United States noted on Wednesday.

Adding that, “The overall increase in violence has resulted in the deaths of nine aid workers in South Sudan to date in 2020. Since the 2013 outbreak of conflict, 124 aid workers ¬– most of whom were South Sudanese — have lost their lives in the line of duty.”

The Embassy underscored that as a result of the violence directed against humanitarian workers, critical humanitarian aid and funding have been reduced, putting lives of millions at risk.

“Moreover, half of all reported humanitarian access incidents during 2020 have involved violence, or threats of violence, against humanitarian workers and assets. As a result, lifesaving assistance has been delayed or interrupted, resulting in the loss of lives of vulnerable South Sudanese citizens.”

“In order to continue delivering life-saving humanitarian assistance, the U.S. Embassy in Juba and the broader humanitarian community in South Sudan calls upon authorities and communities at all levels to guarantee the safety and security of aid workers, humanitarian assets, and all the people who access humanitarian services.”

The US government reaffirmed its commitment to continuing to support the people of South Sudan during these turbulent times.

“The United States is the largest single donor of humanitarian assistance to the people of South Sudan, providing nearly $692 million in humanitarian aid in FY 2020 through UN and NGO partners. The U.S. Embassy, along with the international community, reiterates its commitment to supporting the people of South Sudan.”

UN decries killing of aid workers, urges authorities to apprehend perpetrators

Alain Noudéhou, the Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan |Photo: File
Alain Noudéhou, the Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan |Photo: File

November 4, 2020 (Thessherald)–The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has strongly condemned the increasing and targeted killing of aid workers in the country and urged concerned authorities to investigate the incident and hold those responsible to account.

This comes after an aid worker was killed by a group of armed youth, just a day after another humanitarian staff lost his life while in the line of duty.

Alain Noudéhou, the Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan, expressed deep concern and condemned increasing acts of violence against aid workers in the country.

“I am appalled by these repeated acts of violence against humanitarians. South Sudanese aid workers are enduring difficult conditions to deliver lifesaving assistance to their fellow citizens and should be protected,” he said.

“These two humanitarian workers killed in the past week were South Sudanese and were delivering critical nutrition services to vulnerable people affected by local conflicts and flooding,” said Noudéhou in a statement.

He appealed to relevant authorities to identify the killers and hold them accountable for their actions.

“The violence and the impunity must stop. We need safety and security of the people receiving and delivering aid.”

Last month, a community-based staff working for Nile Hope, a South Sudanese non-governmental organization, in Canal/Pigi County in Jonglei State was fatally shot by armed youth.

“He was on his way from the organization’s base to a facility providing supplementary feeding and outpatient therapeutic care to malnourished children and new mothers. His colleague escaped with minor injuries. All humanitarian services have been temporarily suspended in the area following the shooting.”

The incident brings the number of humanitarian workers killed this year in South Sudan to nine – this is three times the total number of humanitarians who lost their lives in the country in 2019. A total of 124 aid workers, mostly South Sudanese, have lost their lives in the line of duty since the conflict broke out in late 2013.