The United Nations’ top human-rights official has accused South Sudanese government troops and rebels of ethnically targeted atrocities, including extrajudicial executions and rapes, during renewed fighting over the last month.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said on Thursday that preliminary findings showed that the majority of crimes were carried out by troops loyal to President Salva Kiir, who is from the Dinka ethnic group, against people of Nuer origin.
Of 217 cases of sexual violence in the capital, Juba, recorded by the UN between July 8 and 25, “those most affected were displaced Nuer women and girls and those responsible seem to have been mostly SPLA [government troops]”, Zeid said.
The African Union’s envoy to South Sudan, former Botswana President Festus Mogae, has called on warring factions in the opposition to stop the fighting if the fragile peace process is to stand any chance.
Mogae, the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Committee (JMEC) chairperson, said in an interview with African News Agency (ANA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, that the situation in the youngest country in the world was chaotic.