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Over 600,000 IDPs back home

By Kitab A Unango

Over 600,000 Internally Displaced Persons [IDPs] formerly sheltering at United Nations Civilians’ Protection sites across the country have voluntarily left the camps, said UNMISS Chief yesterday.

David Shearer, Special Representative of the Secretary General and Head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) attributed the relative calm to the parties’ commitment to implement the Revitalized Peace Agreement.

He said this has encouraged IDPs to go back home to rebuild their lives.

“The relative calm has enabled 600,000 people to return home since the agreement was signed,” Shearer said.

Shearer was speaking at Peace Forum organized by the Civil Affairs Division of the UNMISS to support the process of implementation of the Revitalized Peace Agreement.

The three day Peace Forum which started yesterday brought together more than 60 stakeholders from the subnational level for dialogue with national leaders and counterparts such as National Pre-Transitional Committee in Juba.

They included political, traditional and religious leaders, local authorities, and representatives of displaced communities, women, youth and civil society organizations.

Shearer in his speech said UNMISS has been encouraged by the peace building processes in the country.

He added that the forum was organize to enable local leaders to share ideas with national leaders on how to fully implement the peace agreement.

“The process of reconciliation and peace building in micro communities have inspired us to have this forum here so that community leaders can communicate directly to the national leaders and learn from each other,” he said.

The UNMISS boss urged leaders in the country to ensure full implementation of the agreement to end sufferings of the people in South Sudan.

“Listen to us and the language here is clear; you have the support from the international communities that tangible results are needed right now,” he said.

However, according to UNMISS weakly reports on status of IDPs camping at UNMISS Protection Sites of Civilians for last week, there still remained180,478 IDPs sheltering in six sites across the country including Malakal, Bentiu, Juba, Bor, Wau PoCs and Adjacent Areas in Wau.

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