NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Hundreds of thousands of South
Sudanese are facing starvation, lack of drinking water and
health care, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
said on Wednesday, calling for urgent action to avert the
Head of ICRC operations for
Eastern Africa, Eric Marclay, said the humanitarian situation in
the world’s youngest state is deteriorating rapidly.
"There is a desperate need for food and drinking water
and access to health care.
"If the situation does not improve, the lives of hundreds
of thousands of people are threatened," Marclay said in a
statement received in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.
Heavy fighting in South Sudan’s Unity and Upper Nile states
over the last two months has displaced more than 100,000 people
and blocked aid delivery for some 650,000 people as humanitarian
institutions have been forced to withdraw, according to United
Nations refugee agency.
Since the beginning of the year, some 60,000 South Sudanese
have fled the country, mostly to Sudan, Ethiopia and Uganda,
bringing the total number of people who escaped the country
since December 2013 to 555,000.
Some 1.5 million are internally displaced, and more than 3.8
million—one third of the country’s population—do not have
The ICRC appealed to donors for an additional 23 million
U.S. dollars to produce a total budget of 162 million
dollars, saying more substantial effort is needed.
The institution aims to distribute food to up to 340,000
people though the initial plans were for 150,000, and to
increase seed distributions and cattle vaccinations.
South Sudan is the ICRC’s second largest area of operation in
the world, after Syria.
Marclay said there is an urgent need for civilians to be
"Warring parties, the international community and aid
agencies must take immediate, sustained and wide-ranging
action," he said.
The situation is particularly severe in some of the
regions in Unity, Upper Nile and Jonglei states, he added.
"Economic activity is minimal, food prices are rising and
basic services, limited. The ICRC has been providing
substantial support to local communities," Maclay said.
"We have received several reports of direct attacks on
"Our medical teams are performing life-saving surgery around
the clock to cope with the influx of wounded.
"The humanitarian situation is deteriorating. Many people
have been killed and wounded. Some people have been displaced
for the second or third time," he added.
At least 78,000 people
newly displaced by conflict in Darfur: senior UN official
UNITED NATIONS New York (Xinhua) --
It is estimated that at least 78,000 people have
been newly displaced by conflict in Darfur this year due to
Sudanese government’s military offensive against rebels, a
senior UN official told the Security Council on Wednesday.
"The second phase of the government’s military offensive,
‘ Operation Decisive Summer’ has resulted in high numbers of
newly displaced people," said Edmond Mulet, assistant
secretary-general for UN peacekeeping operations.
"In addition, the Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs received reports of some 130,000
additional internal displaced persons but was not yet able
to verify," he added.
Mulet said the security situation remained serious in Darfur
with limited progress in the peace process, highlighting that
the current year has seen inter-communal conflicts leading to
periodic outbreaks of violence.
The Security Council convened Wednesday to have consultations
on African Union/United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID)
. The mission was established on July 31, 2007 with the primary
mandate of civilian protection and its current authorization is
until June 30, 2015.
Moulet said the UN Secretariat, in agreement with the
Council for Peace and Security of the African Union, has
requested from the Security Council the extension of
UNAMID’s mandate for an additional year, until June 2016.
He also mentioned that the exit strategy for UNAMID is
based on the achievement of the mission’s benchmarks and
premised on a political solution to the conflict based on
direct talks between the parties, starting with a cessation
"The exist strategy is also based on the gradual and
phased withdrawal of UNAMID’s force from West Darfur where
there have not been any major activities by armed groups or
inter-communal fighting in the past two years," he added.
Darfur region lies on the far west region of Sudan with a
total area estimated at around 500,000 square km. It is
considered Sudan ‘s western gate where the region shares joint
borders with Libya, Chad and Central Africa Republic.
The region has seen growing tribal violence as the local
tribes could easily obtain weapons, while many parts of the area
have no effective governance.
For years, efforts have failed to end the tribal conflicts,
which have become a nagging concern for local population and the
authorities of the troubled region.
clashes displace refugees in western South Sudan
South Sudan fighting has displaced 100,000 in two