1st October 2020
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UN condemns latest attack on aid workers

Author: Daniel Danis | Published: Thursday, August 13, 2020

Yei River County | Credit | Karte: NordNordWest, Lizenz: Creative Commons

The UN has called for an immediate end to attacks on aid workers following another shooting on a humanitarian convoy in Central Equatoria State early this week.

Two humanitarian vehicles were reportedly ambushed and shot at by gunmen along the Yei – Lasu road on Tuesday.

According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, a UNHCR convoy was attacked in Abegi, 16 kilometers from Yei town.

It stated that the van and an ambulance were carrying 15 passengers – 11 staff and 4 patients – at the time of the attack.

The driver of the first vehicle was shot and injured but managed to drive to safety, while the passengers in the ambulance fled to the nearby bushes after it was forced to stop by the gunmen.

They were carrying medical supplies, nutrition and hygiene items. The ambulance was also carrying patients at the time of the ambush.

It was reportedly looted of medical and nutritional supplies by the armed group.

UN OCHA stated that the convoy was on its way to Lasu settlement that is host to refugees from Congo and Sudan.

All the passengers of the convoy are said to be safe. So far, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

But the Humanitarian Coordinator ad interim in South Sudan has strongly condemned the unprovoked attack.

“This is unacceptable. I strongly condemn the unprovoked ambush on a convoy with both vehicles clearly marked by the NGO logo on the van and a visible red cross on the ambulance,” said Dr. Olushayo Olu in a statement.

He called for immediate action by authorities, stating that protecting humanitarian personnel in the country is a duty for all.

“I call upon the Government and all parties to step up efforts to protect humanitarians who are trying their best to deliver aid to refugees who are in need during these uncertain times,” he continued.

He said those responsible should be brought to justice.

In a statement seen by Eye Radio, the UN OCHA appeals to the government and all parties to step up efforts to protect humanitarians who it says are trying their best to deliver aid to the needy.

Dr. Olu demanded for an end to armed violence in South Sudan to enable the fight against growing hunger, flooding and the threat of coronavirus.

“Armed violence should be curbed in South Sudan so that we can all come together to fight against growing hunger, flooding and the threat of COVID-19,” he added.

So far, five aid workers have been killed in South Sudan in 2020.

It brings the total number of humanitarians killed in the country since 2013 to 120.

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