SOUTH SUDAN / TAMBURA HUMAN RIGHTS

Preview Language:   Original
10-Aug-2021 00:03:53
As efforts to implement a peace agreement signed in September 2018 continue in Tambura, South Sudan, this primarily agricultural area that was once the country’s breadbasket is still grappling with intercommunal conflict, displacement and human rights violations. UNMISS

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STORY: SOUTH SUDAN / TAMBURA HUMAN RIGHTS
TRT: 03:53
SOURCE: UNMISS
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGES: ENGLISH / AZANDENATS

DATELINE: 10 AUGUST 2021, TAMBURA, SOUTH SUDAN

SHOTLIST:

1. Various shots, UNMISS patrolling and monitoring the situation
2. SOUNDBITE (Azande) 27-Year-Old Victim of Conflict in Tambura, Western Equatoria, South Sudan:
“They suddenly appeared and held me at gunpoint, ordering me to sit down. They took off our shoes and started removing belongings and took us to Nabiama. They cut my ear off and killed my relative John. I was terrified when I felt a knife at my ear. They cut it off, threw it to the ground and asked me if I would eat it now. Another attacker taunted us by asking if they should slaughter us in the same place, under a big tree. The minute I heard that, I knew they would kill us, and it is better to run than be shot to death. When I started fleeing, I heard three people screaming; the screams stopped abruptly. I walked the whole night to be able to report to the police. The best thing we can have now is peace. We have lived for far too long with conflict and attacks.”
Various shots, Displaced persons
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Leticia Marino, Human Rights Officer, United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“It is clear that we are talking about dozens of persons who have been killed, dozens of people who [have] disappeared, whose family members, wives and children are looking for desperately. We are talking about an immense loss of capital; we are talking about crops that are gone [destroyed] and what [can] generate an impending food crisis here in Western Equatoria. We are talking about a big humanitarian crisis with enormous losses for the peace process and for South Sudan.”
4. Various shots, displaced persons
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Christopher Murenga, Head of Field Office, Yambio, United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“We emphasise that the protection of civilians and the provision of support to them is the primary responsibility of the government. We as the UN are here to support that but they really need to take up the task of protecting their civilians, of stabilizing the situation, reducing violence and engaging all conflicting parties in dialogue as a means in ending the problems that we are currently being faced [with] in Tambura county, in order to ensure durable and inclusive peace and stability for these citizens to be able go on with their daily lives.”
6. Various shots, communities during peace rally

STORYLINE:

As efforts to implement a peace agreement signed in September 2018 continue in Tambura, South Sudan, this primarily agricultural area that was once the country’s breadbasket is still grappling with intercommunal conflict, displacement and human rights violations.

A team of United Nations peacekeepers stepped up patrolling in the area, protecting and assessing the human rights situation.

Save for a few people, life has been emptied from villages around greater Tambura and the town itself where houses remain deserted and communities have fled to internally displaced sites.

Here, a 27-year-old father of one tells a chilling story of his abduction last month, where he lost his left ear and three of his brothers were slaughtered.

SOUNDBITE (Azande) 27-Year-Old Victim of Conflict in Tambura, Western Equatoria, South Sudan:
“They suddenly appeared and held me at gunpoint, ordering me to sit down. They took off our shoes and started removing belongings and took us to Nabiama. They cut my ear off and killed my relative John. I was terrified when I felt a knife at my ear. They cut it off, threw it to the ground and asked me if I would eat it now. Another attacker taunted us by asking if they should slaughter us in the same place, under a big tree. The minute I heard that, I knew they would kill us, and it is better to run than be shot to death. When I started fleeing, I heard three people screaming; the screams stopped abruptly. I walked the whole night to be able to report to the police. The best thing we can have now is peace. We have lived for far too long with conflict and attacks.”

A United Nations Human Rights Officer based in Yambio said they are monitoring the situation and advocated for the protection of lives and well-being of the communities.

SOUNDBITE (English) Leticia Marino, Human Rights Officer, United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“It is clear that we are talking about dozens of persons who have been killed, dozens of people who [have] disappeared, whose family members, wives and children are looking for desperately. We are talking about an immense loss of capital; we are talking about crops that are gone [destroyed] and what [can] generate an impending food crisis here in Western Equatoria. We are talking about a big humanitarian crisis with enormous losses for the peace process and for South Sudan.”

The Head of the UNMISS Field Office in Yambio urged authorities to protect and support the civilians, though UNMISS and humanitarian partners are doing everything they can to help.

SOUNDBITE (English) Christopher Murenga, Head of Field Office, Yambio, United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS):
“We emphasise that the protection of civilians and the provision of support to them is the primary responsibility of the government. We as the UN are here to support that but they really need to take up the task of protecting their civilians, of stabilizing the situation, reducing violence and engaging all conflicting parties in dialogue as a means in ending the problems that we are currently being faced [with] in Tambura county, in order to ensure durable and inclusive peace and stability for these citizens to be able go on with their daily lives.”

Last week hundreds of people from local communities attended a peace rally organized by faith-based groups in Western Equatoria state under the aegis Interfaith Council of Peace as part of efforts to bring peace end the senseless conflict her
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2646314