UN Voices Concern at Deteriorating Situation in South Sudan’s Pibor Town
The United Nations has voiced deep concern about the deteriorating situation in and around Pibor town in South Sudan’s Jonglei state.
The UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) is particularly alarmed by reports about the involvement in some of the incidents of “allegedly defected and ill-disciplined members of security forces,” as well as by statements issued by David Yau Yau’s led armed group demanding civilians to leave Pibor as well as the town of Kapoeta, in Eastern Equatoria state.
In a news release issued yesterday ,UNMISS said that in addition to the “significant displacement of the civilian population out of Pibor,” it has also received reports of widespread looting of civilian dwellings and humanitarian organization premises.
The looting of food and other relief supplies is of great concern, especially given the upcoming rainy season in Jonglei, according to UNMISS spokesperson Ariane Quentier.
“This food that is pre-positioned is meant to be used in the coming months when roads will be impassable and when civilians will be in need of food to be able to survive,” she said in an interview with UN Radio.
“We want the Government to take action against the perpetrators of the violence that has been going on and make sure that those people are held to account… We have demanded that a number of measures be taken.”
UNMISS, whose troops were already patrolling Pibor town before the looting started, has reinforced its presence there with additional troops and has deployed a military unit to protect pre-positioned food stocks. UNMISS peacekeepers also have clear instructions to assist in protecting the civilian population in Pibor.