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Orphans caught in the Sudanese crossfire

Story from: CAJ News Africa

unmissFrom RAJI BASHIR in Khartoum, Sudan
KHARTOUM, (CAJ News) – THE safety of some 250 children and their keepers is at enormous risk with an orphanage caught between South Sudanese government forces and opposition militia.The warring forces have taken up battle positions at the facility.The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) peacekeepers has repeatedly been denied access to the orphanage near the town of Torit in Eastern Equatoria.
The UN mission has in response to the crisis deployed a contingent of Nepalese peacekeepers to Torit.“It is unacceptable that 250 innocent children, and the people who care for them, find themselves in no-man’s land between the warring parties,”David Shearer, head of UNMISS and UN’s special representative of the Secretary-General, said.
He appealed to both sides of the raging conflict to reflect on the message of peace expressed by South Sudan President, Salva Kiir, on independence day and to withdraw from the area.The world’s newest country marked six years of independence from Sudan last week amid an escalating civil war pitting forces loyal to Kiir and his deposed deputy, Riek Machar. Kiir dismissed Machar and ten others from government in 2013 on allegations of plotting a coup against him.This triggered bloodbath and an exodus of civilians to neighbouring countries.Up to 300 000 civilians have been killed and 2 million fled the country.

–CAJ News


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