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South Sudan: Massive displacements due to ethnic violence and killings

19.05.2014  17:26

19 May 2014
More than one million people in South Sudan are now internally displaced due to killings, disappearances, rapes, and other human rights violations resulting from ethnic conflict. The crisis deteriorates day by day.

Against this background the Danish Government has decided to grant an additional 10 million USD for acute humanitarian assistance to the population of South Sudan, which is seriously affected by the conflict. The commitment was announced Tuesday May 20th at a humanitarian donor conference in Oslo.

The Danish Minister for Trade and Development Cooperation, Mogens Jensen, states: “There is no choice. We have to react to the situation in South Sudan. Humanitarian Aid cannot solve the conflict, but we can help prevent that, extremely poor displaced people die from hunger.”

According to the UN one million people are internally displaced, and 340.000 South Sudanese have escaped to the neighbouring countries Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya. The UN estimates that almost five million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.

A recently published UN-report describes massive and systematic abuse, which could indicate crimes against humanity. According to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, the responsibility lies with the current president Salva Kiir and the former vice-president Riek Machar, leading the armed opposition. Neither of them can be unaware about the crimes taking place under their command.

About the need for political action, Mogens Jensen says:
“The parties to the conflict have committed themselves to stop the fighting and finding a peaceful solution. There has to be an end to the human rights violations. Through massive pressure from the international community we have to make them live up to their obligations. Denmark is ready to support the use of targeted individual sanctions in the EU, and we strongly support the regional efforts to find a solution to the conflict.”

The worsened humanitarian situation has triggered the donor conference in Oslo. A revised UN appeal of 1.28 billion USD covering acute humanitarian aid as well as restocking warehouses for emergency food supplies , is expected to be launched soon.

The Danish contribution of 10 million USD will primarily be targeted food aid for refugees. 4.57 million USD will be distributed through the World Food Programme (WFP), 3.66 million USD through the Common Humanitarian Fund for South Sudan (CHF), and 1.83 million USD through the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

With the latest pledge Denmark has contributed with 36 million USD in Humanitarian Aid for South Sudan since the outbreak of the conflict in December 2013.

For additional enquiries, please contact Poul Kjar: +45 4186 5975