Thursday, December 31, 2015

So Long to Sudan

See ya' next year!

"Despite a peace agreement, civil war ravages South Sudan" by Jason Patinkin Associated Press  December 17, 2015

LEER, South Sudan — It’s been two years since the civil war began in South Sudan, a nation which is itself only four years old. The violence continues, despite a peace deal signed more than three months ago.

You will have to scroll to see what has come in between.

The war started on Dec. 15, 2013, after a skirmish between soldiers in a barracks in Juba, the capital. Soldiers loyal to President Salva Kiir, an ethnic Dinka, perpetrated organized ethnic killings of Nuer, the tribe of Kiir’s political rival Riek Machar, according to an African Union commission report.

The Juba Massacre prompted an uprising of Nuer in the country’s northeast led by Machar, a Kiir’s former vice president.

The insurgents committed revenge massacres which rivaled the Juba killings in their horror, spurring a cycle of violence. The United Nations says tens of thousands have been killed, while other estimates range up to 100,000.

The brutality of the fighting has shred South Sudan’s social fabric, exposing buried ethnic fault lines and creating new ones which have made attempts at reconciliation unsuccessful.

Over 2 million people have fled their homes, including hundreds of thousands seeking refuge in neighboring countries.

Not getting waved at us like Syrians, are they?

This year, the government gained the military upper hand after repulsing a rebel attempt to capture oil fields in Upper Nile state and launching a blistering summer offensive through Unity state following the collapse of peace talks in Ethiopia in March.

Both sides of the conflict stand accused of using child soldiers.

Human Rights Watch Tuesday named more than 15 South Sudanese government commanders and rebel officials who have recruited and used child soldiers during the war.

More than 100 child soldiers were interviewed for the report.

They described how they lived for months without enough food, far away from family, and were thrown into terrifying gun battles in which they were injured and saw friends killed, Human Rights Watch said....