Over 300,000 people without life-saving aid in South Sudan

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Refugee camp in South Sudan. Close to a year and a half of conflict has devastated the lives of millions of people. Photo: UNOCHA (file)

More than 300,000 South Sudanese in need of emergency relief do not currently have access to life-saving assistance, according to the United Nations.

Ongoing hostilities in South Sudan's Unity state have reportedly forced the humanitarian response to be suspended.

Close to a year and a half of conflict has devastated the lives of millions of people in the world's youngest nation.

Stephanie Coutrix reports.

All non-governmental organisations and UN agencies have been forced to evacuate staff from Leer and other locations, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan announced on Monday.

Toby Lanzer said the humanitarian response south of Bentiu in Unity state has come to a stop, at a time when stocks of food are depleted.

Mr Lanzer explained that aid agencies are committed to returning to all areas of southern Unity to continue emergency operations as soon as it is safe for them to do so.

He has called for assurances from the parties to the conflict that the work of aid agencies, based on the principles of humanity, impartiality and neutrality, can continue without delay.

The renewal of violence in southern Unity is also coinciding at the height of the traditional planting season when civilians could be planting their crops in order to reap a harvest later this year.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 57″

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