MADRID, Feb. 17 (Royals Blue) –
The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) highlighted this Thursday the “significant” decrease in violence against the civilian population of the African country, which decreased by 42 percent in 2021 compared to the previous year.
Thus, according to data from the Human Rights Division of the UN mission, over the past year 3,414 civilian victims of homicides, injuries, kidnappings and sexual violence were confirmed in a total of 982 documented incidents.
Most of the victims were men –75 percent–, followed by women and children –fourteen and eleven percent, respectively–. By comparison, in 2020, the Mission reported 5,850 civilian casualties.
Specifically, cases of sexual violence related to internal conflicts fell slightly from 211 in 2020 to 194 in 2021, although it is true that the United Nations has stressed that these figures continue to represent “unacceptably high levels”.
UNMISS has noted that many of the victims were killed or injured during attacks by armed militias in Junqali states and Greater Pibor Administrative Area; being, on the other hand, the month of May the period in which the violence intensified with at least 230 dead, 178 kidnapped and fourteen women subjected to sexual violence.
Likewise, the United Nations mission has also lamented the “worrying increase in clashes in Tambura, in the state of Western Equatoria, between ethnic militias that “supposedly are affiliated with the conventional parties to the conflict.” This escalation resulted in 440 deaths , 18 injured, 74 kidnappings and 64 cases of sexual violence.
In the face of these developments, UNMISS deployed peacekeepers in the most conflictive areas, establishing 116 temporary operating bases last year in order to “improve the protection of civilians through patrolling”, as well as with political and community consultations at the local, state and national level.
Finally, given these results, UNMISS has urged the Government of South Sudan to investigate the violations and abuses of Human Rights, while demanding that “all perpetrators be held accountable”.