South Sudan edging closer to genocide, says UN

Wednesday March 08 2017

Women carry sacks of food distributed on March 4, 2017 in Ganyiel, Panyijiar County in South Sudan. Parts of country are experiencing man-made famine, says UN. PHOTO | AFP

A United Nations report says South Sudan is experiencing ethnic cleansing and edging closer to genocide. 

Findings also included details of armed forces targeting civilians in deliberate attacks and starvation. 

The report, which is the result of a seven-month inquiry into human rights in South Sudan, found that since fighting broke out in July 2016, human rights violations and abuses have been on the rise. 

It says government forces and other armed groups have been using the conflict as a smokescreen to carry out ethnically-motivated attacks on civilians, deliberate starvation, forced displacement and hate speech. 

While both the army and rebel forces were accused of abuses, the report places most of the blame on the governing SPLA, National Security Service, police and other affiliated militia groups.

The UN recently said that parts of South Sudan are experiencing a man-made famine. Now it details the restrictions placed on aid agencies – saying the resulting starvation of civilians is being used as a method of warfare, in violation of international law.


READ: South Sudan declares famine in parts of war-torn country

The report also accuses government forces, many of whom are ethnic Dinka, of targeting civilians from the Nuer, including raping women.

The government of South Sudan has denied that genocide and ethnic cleansing are going on and President Salva Kiir has called for national dialogue. (BBC)