South Sudan

South Sudan Refugees to Uganda Hit 50,000

The current wave of violence in South Sudan has pushed 60, online 000 people to the neighboring countries with more than three quarters ending up in Uganda.

The statement from the United Nation’s High Commission for Refugees on Tuesday evening said the influx of refugees from oil rich volatile nation into the Southern neighbor have drastically increased in the past one week and some few days.

“Refugee flows from South Sudan into Uganda have doubled in the past ten days, bringing to more than 52, 000 the total number who have entered the country since violence escalated three weeks ago,” UN Refugee agency said last evening at its headquarters in Geneva.

The same statement indicated that the remaining 8000 refugees fled to Kenya in the South East and Sudan in the north.

“Kenya, meanwhile, has reported the arrival of 1,000 refugees in the same period, while 7,000 have fled to Sudan.”

The UN relief body stressed that a total of 60,000 people have fled the country since violence broke out in Juba last month, bringing the overall number of South Sudanese refugees in neighboring countries since December 2013 to nearly 900,000.

The UNHCR spokesperson Melissa Fleming told a press briefing in Geneva that refugees brought disturbing reports that armed groups operating on roads to Uganda are preventing people from fleeing South Sudan.

“Armed groups are looting villages, restricting movement and forcibly recruiting young men into their ranks.”

“Refugees have also reported that armed groups operating across different parts of South Sudan are looting villages, restricting movement and forcibly recruiting young men and boys into their ranks,”
Fleming said.

The first internal conflict broke out in South Sudan in December 2013 just two years after gaining independence from the majority Arab north in 2011.

The war has produced one of the world’s worst displacement situations, along with immense human atrocities characterized with rape, earth scorch policy, burning people alive, conscription of minors and many others.

More than 85 per cent of the refugees currently arriving in Uganda according to the UNHCR are women and children under the age of 18.

Many children have lost one or both of their parents. Most are from Eastern Equatoria state, with smaller numbers from the capital, Juba and Upper Nile state.

Many reportedly took advantage of the opportunity to flee alongside Ugandan military convoys evacuating Ugandan nationals.

Improving conditions and capacities at existing reception facilities in Uganda is a key priority. Collection points in border areas have now been significantly decongested, although transit centers and reception centres remain severely stretched. Efforts are underway to open rapidly a new 100,000-capacity refugee settlement area in Yumbe district.

“Kenya and Uganda are reporting rising cases of severe malnutrition, particularly among very young children.”

“Both Kenya and Uganda are reporting rising cases of severe malnutrition, particularly among very young children. Those found to be suffering are being placed on food nourishment programmes to bring
them back to health,” Fleming said.

Inside South Sudan, where aid agencies are concerned about inability to provide urgent help to needy populations, the generalized collapse in the protection of civilians is also affecting many of the 250,000
refugees, mainly from Sudan, Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Since the outbreak of fighting in Juba, UNHCR said its access to 2,000 Ethiopian refugees living in Gorom camp, near the capital has been severely curtailed due to insecurity on the road and militarization of
the area surrounding the camp leaving them extremely vulnerable.

The camp is surrounded by military barracks; movements of soldiers through the camp and sporadic gunfire have still been reported by refugees according to UNHCR.

In the Maban refugee camps in the heavily affected Upper Nile state, three public health-care units were temporarily unable to function after technical staff were stranded in Juba.

UNHCR appealed to all parties to the conflict of the fundamental human right to seek asylum and urging them to ensure that civilians are provided with unhindered access to safety as the number of refugees
crosses a worrying milestone.

With over 2.6 million of its citizens forcibly displaced, South Sudan currently ranks among the countries with the highest levels of conflict-induced population displacement globally. Half of its 12 million people rely on humanitarian aid.

Back to top button
Translate »

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker