20 April 2014

South Sudan: UN, Army Reinforce Security in Bor

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan, UNMISS and the South Sudanese Army over the weekend reinforced security in Bor, capital of Jonglei State where armed men on April 17, 2014 attacked displaced people at a UN camp. Some 58 people died, among them 10 assailants, Radio France Internationale, RFI, reported yesterday, April 20, 2014.

The assault on the camp that sheltered almost 5,000 civilians, began with a protest that later turned violent when the demonstrators opened fire on displaced people inside the camp. While the UN expressed outrage at the deadly attack, the government blamed UNMISS for lax security.

The UN said its peacekeepers returned fire as a mob of some 300 people forced their way into the base in an "unprovoked attack." The UN Security Council condemned the assault, warning that attacks on civilians and UN peacekeepers may constitute war crimes, the BBC reported yesterday.

The Security Council therefore called on the government of South Sudan to immediately take steps to ensure the safety of all civilians and UNMISS Protection of Civilian sites, swiftly investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice. Meanwhile, South Sudan on Friday, April 18, 2014, revealed that the mandate of the United Nations mission in the country will not be renewed in July 2014 without approval by its Parliament.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Barnaba Marial Benjamin and his Interior counterpart, Aleu Ayieny Aleu, said the terms of the mission will be reviewed. UMISS was set up to monitor the peace deal that culminated in South Sudan's formal secession from Sudan in 2011.

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