NewsPoliticsTop NewsWorld

UN official expresses concern over escalating violence in southern Sudan

SUDAN (OBSERVATORY) –┬áThe United Nations is concerned about the escalation of violence in three southern states, a senior UN official said on Friday, adding that shooting occurred near a peacekeeping force base on Thursday night.

A UN official said on Thursday that 10 aid workers were missing in Yai, central Equatoria state, in the latest incident involving humanitarian workers in the war-torn country.

David Shearer, Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations Antonio Guterich, said the clashes had escalated in Unity, Jonglei and Central Equatoria states.

“Innocent civilians, including many women, children and the elderly, find themselves trapped in the midst of the shooting,” he said in a statement.

“Our teams on the ground are reporting incidents of murder, sexual violence, burning houses and raiding to steal cattle and loot hospitals and schools,” he said.

Shearer said a shooting took place last night near a temporary base for a peacekeeping mission in Leer.

Southern Sudan has suffered a civil war since 2013 when President Salva Kiir dismissed his deputy, Rikk Machar.

Shearer said more than 30 aid workers had been moved to other locations in the past two weeks after it became dangerous to work in an atmosphere of rising violence that forced thousands to flee to swamps and forests, depriving them of food, clean water and medical care.