UNMISS-Deployment requested by community

By Elia Joseph Loful

The deployment of UNMISS Peacekeepers in Lobonok area is said to be requested by community on the ground, the United Nation Secretary General Special Representative and Head UNMISS for South Sudan  Mr. David Shearer told media yesterday.

Mr. Shearer held a press conference meant to respond on the current rate of violence in Central Equatoria, Greater Jonglei and situation of flooding in Jonglei State. The frequent aggressions between SSPDF, IO and NAS have been reported it has resulted in recent road ambush which led to the killing of six bodyguards of the Vice President Dr. James Wani Igga on Lobonok-Juba road. Earlier, NAS forces claimed the responsibility of the attack.

Early this week, UNMISS vowed to deploy its peacekeeping forces in Lobonok in Central Equatoria to help in deterring roads violence in the area.

Shearer said the response was a request raised by the community on the ground saying that the forces would be on temporary base.

“This week we are responding by deploying troops to the area and setting up a temporary base in Lobonok so that we can do regular patrols to prevent further attacks and hopefully calm the situation,” Shearer said.

“The reason for going to Lobonok is the request from the people on the ground who are under the threats at the moment. There have been some reluctant from SSPDF on the ground to allow us to do that but we appealed to them that, this is what people need on the ground,” he explained.

He urged the warring parties to committed to the agreement and ensure the protection of communities and stop fighting each other.

Shearer further stressed that situation in Jonglei State has been worsen by constant flooding which has led to the displacement of 160,000 people, adding communities should refrain from circle of violence.

He stated that as UNMISS starts withdrawing its forces from Protection of Civilians Sites, the government should take charge in finding land to settle the IDPs.

“It will be the government’s responsibility to find other land for these people to settle, to help them to return to their homes or assist those whose houses are occupied by others,” said Shearer.

In January the Government and Salvation Front (NAS) with other outlaws groups signed a cessation of hostilities in Rome known as Rome Declaration and agreed to abide by it as well as allowing free movement of humanitarian agencies to deliver assistance without restrictions. However, the parties did not adhere to the declaration.

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