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Dimo Silva Aurelio

Juba, South Sudan
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About Dimo
Dimo Silva Aurelio, is a South Sudanese freelance journalist, who has written extensively on South Sudan's conflict and human rights issues in the Country, he visited refugees in camps in Uganda who gave their accounts of the conflict.

Before the conflict broke out in South Sudan in 2013, he worked as a reporter and editor with the Catholic Radio Network’s Voice of Hope, a community-based radio station in Wau and Torit mentoring junior reporters and helping them built their profession. 

 Since April 2015, he regularly contributes to Voice of America’s South Sudan in Focus program and currently writes for The Globe and the Defense posts. Dimo graduated with a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration from the University of Bahr El-Ghazal in 2015. Before he realized his passion for journalism, he had wanted to become a Catholic priest and had studied in a Seminary School.

Dimo Silva has interviewed prominent South Sudanese leaders and religious leaders on South Sudan's conflict including the emeritus Bishop Paride Taban of the Catholic Diocese of Torit, Metropolitan Bishop John Baptist Odama of Gulu in Northern Uganda and Daniel Bul of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan. 

Dimo Silva looks forward to making outstanding steps that could help shape democracy in South Sudan by informing the citizens and stimulating their thinking to make a free and informed decision on issues affecting the Country socially, economically and politically.
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EU and UN Commit Millions to Aid Displaced in South Sudan

12 Oct 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The European Union and United Nations agencies have pledged financial support to assist returnees and internally displaced persons in Wau, the capital of Western Bahr al Ghazal State in South Sudan. A $26.5 million project, managed by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), aims to help these families rebuild their lives and secure a better future for their children. The report highlights the commitment of international organizations to address the challenges faced by displaced populations in the region.

South Sudan Civil Society Raises Concerns Over Transitional Justice

13 Sep 2023  |  voaafrica.com
Civil society activists in South Sudan are raising concerns about the handling of transitional justice. They are particularly worried about the lack of specifics in two bills being discussed by the Council of Ministers, which fail to address the protection of victims in legal processes. The deputy chairperson of the Technical Committee for the Transitional Justice Working Group has highlighted these issues. The report is by Dimo Silva Aurelio, who is based in Juba and is providing this update for South Sudan in Focus.

Episcopal Church of South Sudan Highlights Need for Legal Education in Peace Efforts

12 Sep 2023  |  voaafrica.com
Archbishop Justine Badi Arama of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan has highlighted the importance of skilled legal professionals in achieving lasting peace in South Sudan. His remarks were made during an event that marked the inauguration of a vice chancellor and the launch of a law school at the Episcopal University. The event signifies a step towards enhancing legal education in the country, which Archbishop Arama believes is crucial for maintaining peace. The report was filed by Dimo Silva Aurelio for South Sudan in Focus, from Juba.

Juba's Waste Management Initiative Turns Plastic Bottles into Profit

06 Sep 2023  |  voaafrica.com
PLASCOM, a waste management company in Juba, South Sudan, has launched a 'Pick-and-Earn' campaign that is positively impacting the local community. The initiative encourages residents to collect plastic bottles, which the company then recycles. This program not only promotes environmental cleanliness by reducing plastic waste but also provides a source of income for the people involved. The campaign has been successful, with over 30 tons of plastic waste collected in Juba town, demonstrating the potential for waste to be transformed into a valuable resource.

Aid Workers Brave Danger to Assist Vulnerable South Sudanese [3:47]

21 Aug 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The article discusses the dangerous conditions faced by aid workers in South Sudan, highlighting the country as the most perilous location for such individuals according to United Nations officials. Despite the frequent attacks, aid workers maintain their dedication to providing necessary help to those in need. The report is brought from Juba by Dimo Silva Aurelio, who is likely a correspondent or journalist for 'South Sudan in Focus'.

South Sudan Ratifies UN Convention on Disability Rights

19 Aug 2023  |  voaafrica.com
South Sudan has become the 185th country to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, with President Salva Kiir endorsing the convention on February 21. Diana Joseph from South Sudan Women with Disabilities emphasized the importance of this ratification for increasing representation and participation of women with disabilities in government. James Bandas of UNMISS Human Rights division and Augustine Wudu Ilario of the South Sudan Union of Persons with Disabilities also spoke on the need to integrate the convention into the national legal framework to combat discrimination and promote equal rights. Ester Ikere from the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare discussed raising awareness and disseminating the convention's information nationwide. The celebration of this milestone focused on the theme 'Disability Rights Are Human Rights, Remove Barriers and Promote Inclusion, Leaving No One Behind.'

Disabled Individuals in Juba Celebrate UN Disabilities Convention Ratification

16 Aug 2023  |  voaafrica.com
In Juba, South Sudan, individuals with disabilities celebrated the ratification of the United Nations Disabilities Convention. The event marked a significant milestone for disability rights in the country. The head of the South Sudan Union of Persons with Disabilities shared optimism that the ratification would lead to decreased discrimination against disabled persons. The report highlights the local response to the ratification and the expectations for positive change in the treatment of disabled individuals within South Sudan.

UNDP and U.N. Women Launch Financing Facility in South Sudan

02 Aug 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and U.N. Women have initiated a financing facility aimed at empowering the youth and women of South Sudan. This program provides interest-free loans of up to $10,000 to assist in the creation of business startups. The initiative is designed to span over three years and is reported by Dimo Silva Aurelio from Juba for South Sudan in Focus.

South Sudan Aid Officials Appeal for Funding to Transport Refugees

27 Jul 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The article reports on the urgent appeal for funding by aid officials in South Sudan to support the transportation of people fleeing conflict in Sudan. The acting United Nations humanitarian coordinator in South Sudan has raised concerns about the lack of funding, which is crucial for transporting refugees and returnees to their final destinations. The report highlights that without additional financial support, the humanitarian efforts to move people will halt within two weeks. The report is from Juba, South Sudan, and was filed by Dimo Silva Aurelio for VOA.

USAID Donates Emergency High-Energy Biscuits to Aid Sudanese Refugees

25 Jul 2023  |  voaafrica.com
USAID has contributed to the humanitarian efforts in Sudan by donating 40.5 metric tons of high-energy biscuits to the United Nations World Food Program. This donation is intended to support individuals who have been displaced due to the ongoing conflict in Sudan and are now seeking refuge in South Sudan. The high-energy biscuits are meant to provide essential nutrition to those affected by the violence. Dimon Silva Aurelio has reported this development from Juba for South Sudan in Focus.

Building Collapse in Juba's Hai Soura Neighborhood

07 Jul 2023  |  voaafrica.com
A building under construction in the Hai Soura neighborhood of Juba, South Sudan, collapsed on Thursday. Police in Juba have stated that rescue teams are actively searching for survivors and recovering bodies from the site of the collapse. There is currently an unspecified number of individuals trapped under the debris. Dimo Silva Aurelio provided this report for the program 'South Sudan in Focus'.

Building Collapse in SSudan's Capital Results in Unconfirmed Casualties [2:41]

06 Jul 2023  |  voaafrica.com
A building collapse in Juba's Hai Thoura neighborhood has resulted in an unknown number of casualties and several injuries. The incident occurred while construction workers were transporting materials to the third floor, leading to the building's failure. Details are still emerging, and the report comes from Dimo Silva Aurelio of South Sudan in Focus, who is on the ground in Juba.

South Sudan Forms Blind Football Association

27 Jun 2023  |  Voice of America
The article discusses the first blind football league in South Sudan, which started two months ago and caters to visually impaired players. The game is adapted for the players with balls and goal posts equipped with alarms. Despite initial skepticism, the league has shown that visually impaired individuals can participate and succeed in football. Injuries are currently an issue as players learn the rules, including the use of the word 'voy' to prevent collisions. The league aims to change lives and plans to compete in regional and international tournaments.

South Sudanese Flee Ongoing Fighting in Sudan

26 May 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The article discusses the experiences of South Sudanese individuals who have fled the conflict in Sudan. It highlights the intense fighting between the Sudan Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces in Khartoum and other cities. A particular focus is given to the story of Khamisa John, a returnee who lived in Sudan for two decades and faced a 'difficult and dangerous' journey to South Sudan. The report is by Dimo Silva Aurelio from Juba for the program 'South Sudan in Focus'.

Oxfam Africa Director Urges Donor Support for South Sudan

19 May 2023  |  voaafrica.com
Fati N'zi Hassane, the Africa director of the British charity Oxfam, has called on donors to provide financial support to help alleviate the worsening humanitarian crisis in South Sudan. The country is facing multiple challenges, including flooding, ongoing conflict, widespread displacement of people, and soaring food prices, all of which are exacerbating the plight of its citizens. The situation is dire and requires immediate attention and aid. The report on this appeal and the conditions in South Sudan was delivered by Dimo Silva Aurelio from Juba for the program 'South Sudan in Focus'.

East African Officials Discuss Regional Transport Project

18 May 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The article discusses a high-level meeting focused on advancing a major infrastructure project in East Africa, which aligns with the African Union's 2063 agenda for regional integration. Kenya's cabinet secretary, Kipchumba Murkomen, highlighted Kenya's progress on road construction linking Lamu Port to Ethiopia and South Sudan. Ethiopia's Finance Minister, Eyob Tekalign, emphasized the need for joint efforts and private sector involvement despite internal challenges. South Sudan's vice president, Taban Deng Gai, acknowledged Juba's slow progress due to funding issues, while South Sudan's transport minister, Madut Biar Yel, spoke of the transformative potential of the project. The initiative includes highways, a pipeline, communication networks, railways, airports, and resort cities, aiming to benefit 250 million people in the region.

South Sudan Government Funds WFP for Humanitarian Aid

05 Apr 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The government of South Sudan has allocated $15 million to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) to support feeding programs and provide essential assistance to South Sudanese returning to the country and to Sudanese refugees escaping the ongoing conflict in Sudan. This financial support is aimed at addressing the humanitarian needs arising from the conflict. An official agreement formalizing this support was signed on Wednesday by the South Sudanese finance ministry and the WFP, as reported by Dimo Silva Aurelio from Juba for the Voice of America (VOA).

Mixed Views in South Sudan on the Anniversary of Liberation Struggle

05 Apr 2023  |  voaafrica.com
As South Sudan commemorates the 40th anniversary of the conflict that led to its independence, citizens in Juba have differing opinions on the success of the liberation struggle. Some believe the SPLM/SPLA achieved its goal by liberating the people from marginalization by Khartoum's military regimes. Others argue that despite gaining independence, the SPLM/SPLA has not resolved ongoing issues such as insecurity. The report highlights the mixed sentiments among South Sudanese regarding the outcomes of their country's fight for independence.

Challenges to Free Education Initiative in South Sudan's Torit

04 Apr 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The article discusses the challenges faced by the government's initiative to provide free education to children in South Sudan. Specifically, it highlights the situation in Torit, a town in Western Equatoria, where volunteer teachers have ceased teaching due to the discontinuation of financial incentives. This occurred as a result of parents no longer paying school fees, which were presumably used to fund these incentives. The report is by Dimo Silva Aurelio for the program 'South Sudan in Focus'.

US Sanctions South Sudanese Leaders for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence

04 Apr 2023  |  voaafrica.com
The United States Treasury Department has imposed sanctions on two South Sudanese leaders for their alleged involvement in conflict-related sexual violence. The individuals targeted are the governor of Western Equatoria State and a senior officer in the South Sudan People's Defense Forces. They are accused of using their positions to perpetrate sexual violence in the region. The report, which comes from Juba, highlights the U.S. government's actions in response to these serious allegations.

UN: 34 Million People ‘Knocking at Famine’s Door’ Worldwide

11 Mar 2021  |  voanews.com
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres highlighted the severe hunger crisis in conflict-affected countries, with over 88 million people facing acute hunger by the end of 2020. He emphasized that conflict drives hunger and vice versa. Guterres and WFP Executive Director David Beasley pointed out that millions are on the brink of famine in countries like Yemen, South Sudan, Burkina Faso, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Syria. The World Food Program, which won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2020, needs $5.5 billion to avert famine. The U.N. is also concerned about the humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia's Tigray Region, where conflict has worsened food insecurity. The U.S. has called for an end to fighting and restrictions on humanitarian aid. Guterres announced the creation of a High-Level Task Force on Preventing Famine to address these crises.

South Sudan Introduces Fines for Not Wearing Masks, Social Distancing

08 Mar 2021  |  voanews.com
The South Sudanese government has implemented fines for individuals not wearing face masks or practicing social distancing, with penalties set at 6,000 South Sudanese pounds for individuals and $100 for unauthorized facilities treating COVID-19 patients. The fines have been met with criticism from citizens and activists who argue they are excessive given the low income of civil servants and the lack of government support in providing masks or educating the public about the pandemic. Some residents and activists suggest the government should distribute free masks and install water points for handwashing. Others, however, support the fines as a necessary measure to ensure public compliance with health directives. The government's task force insists the fines are justified to protect public health.

Sudanese Protest Over Bread, Fuel Prices

28 Jan 2021  |  voanews.com
Sudan has been experiencing a resurgence of protests due to the removal of subsidies for fuel and other items, leading to a sharp increase in the cost of living. The protests, which were initially sparked two years ago, have been reignited by the transitional government's economic reforms demanded by the International Monetary Fund. The price of diesel, bread, and electricity has soared, causing widespread discontent. Protesters, organized by groups like Al Kalakla Abu Adam Resistance Committee and the Sudanese Professional Association, have varying demands ranging from the removal of the transitional government to immediate economic reforms. There is also concern that pro-Bashir loyalists within the government are attempting to exploit the protests to create chaos. Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and the Empowerment Removal Committee have been criticized for not taking decisive action against these elements.

South Sudan Religious Leaders Hold Talks Aimed at Ending Intercommunal Fighting

06 Jan 2021  |  voaafrica.com
In South Sudan's Central Equatoria state, religious leaders and civil society activists are initiating peace and reconciliation talks to address intercommunal violence that resulted in numerous deaths last month. Meetings have been held in Terekeka County with community leaders. Archbishop Paul Ygugusuk of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan attributes the violence to unenforced resolutions and lack of justice for cattle raid victims. Over 50 people were killed in December, and many were displaced, says Bishop Paul Modi. Edmund Yakani, from the NGO Community Empowerment for Progress Organization, suggests the government should improve its disarmament campaign and provide better protection. A national peace dialogue is planned to tackle the issues of cattle raids and revenge attacks. President Salva Kiir has urged for reconciliation and peace in his New Year's message, emphasizing the government's commitment to resolving conflicts.

Sudanese Church Leaders Preach Caution About COVID-19 on Christmas

24 Dec 2020  |  voaafrica.com
In Sudan, church leaders are urging adherence to government and World Health Organization guidelines during Christmas to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Some churches have canceled traditional midnight services, opting for smaller or virtual gatherings. The Reverend Shimal Kuwa of Christ Church in Khartoum has advised his congregation to pray at home on Christmas Eve and attend a service with strict mask-wearing protocols the next day. Sudan’s health committee has directed all places of worship to hold prayers in open spaces. Church leaders, including Abuna Mujahid of the Pentecostal Church and Father Philip Baptist Abbaker of Saint Charles Luwanga Parish, are emphasizing the importance of following health guidelines. Salma Gabriel, a Sudanese Christian, expressed gratitude for being allowed to hold a Christmas carol procession, a first since the ouster of President Omar al-Bashir. Sudan has reported over 20,000 COVID-19 cases and nearly 1,500 deaths.

U.N. Official Warns of Stalled Peace Process in South Sudan

30 Sep 2020  |  voaafrica.com
David Shearer, the special representative of the U.N. Secretary General for UNMISS, expressed concerns about the stagnating peace process in South Sudan. He highlighted the government's irregular cabinet meetings, the delay in reconstituting the National Legislative Assembly, and the lack of progress on security sector reform. Shearer noted that the military forces, which were to be trained and unified, are deserting due to lack of supplies. He warned that the delays in the peace deal's implementation could postpone elections and deny citizens the chance to elect their leaders. Shearer also criticized the South Sudanese military (SSPDF) for not respecting the U.N. peacekeepers' freedom of movement, referencing an incident where peacekeepers were blocked from deploying in Lobonok. SSPDF spokesperson Brigadier General Lul Ruai Koang denied the allegations, stating there was a communication issue. Shearer urged for urgent action to reinvigorate the peace process and called for respect from the SSPDF towards U.N. peacekeepers.

South Sudan Catholics Return to Church

22 Sep 2020  |  voaafrica.com
In Juba, South Sudan, Catholic worshippers returned to Mass at St. Joseph's Catholic Church after a nearly five-month suspension due to COVID-19. The government had previously banned religious and other gatherings to curb the spread of the virus. The faithful, including Sabina Doki Plachido and Rita Juan Dimitri, expressed joy at the resumption of services. New safety measures were introduced by Metropolitan Archbishop Stephen Ameyu Martin, including mandatory face masks, hand washing, social distancing, and a revised method of taking Holy Communion. Despite some reluctance to adhere to the guidelines, the church is taking precautions seriously, with the possibility of re-closing if infections rise. The church has also increased the number of services to reduce attendance per service.

South Sudan Extends Partial Lockdown Indefinitely

23 Apr 2020  |  voaafrica.com
The South Sudan High Level Taskforce for COVID-19 has decided to extend the country's partial lockdown indefinitely, keeping schools, most shops, borders, and Juba International Airport closed. This decision was made despite expectations that the lockdown would be lifted. Residents of Juba have mixed feelings about the lockdown, with some deeming it unnecessary while others agree with the continued closure of borders. Nancy Kiden, a salon owner, and Akuoc Ajang Nyanhom, chairperson of the South Sudan Civil Society Alliance, expressed concerns over the economic hardships faced by small businesses and individuals due to the lockdown. They highlighted the struggles of women in particular to provide for their families. Some bars are reportedly operating illegally by bribing security agents. Samuel Kenyi, another resident, questioned the need for church closures given the low number of COVID-19 cases in the country. South Sudan has reported four confirmed cases of COVID-19 and has over 100 people in quarantine.

Defections Hit South Sudan Opposition Party

20 Apr 2020  |  Voice of America
Several members of South Sudan's main opposition party, the SPLM-IO, have defected to the ruling party led by President Salva Kiir. The defections were announced by Dak Duop Bichiok, a former political bureau member of SPLM-IO, who criticized the opposition leader Riek Machar for running the party like a family dynasty. The criticism intensified after Machar's wife, Angelina Teny, was appointed as the minister of defense. Defectors, including Bichiok and Yien Thiang, accuse Machar of bias in appointments and mismanagement of party resources. Despite the allegations, specific instances of Machar's inappropriate actions were not provided. The SPLM-IO spokesman did not comment on the defections. Former party officials warn that unless changes are made, more defections are likely due to perceived lack of democracy and transparency within the party.

US Gives South Sudan Government $8M to Fight COVID-19

31 Mar 2020  |  voaafrica.com
The United States has provided $8 million to South Sudan to aid in preventing the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S. Embassy in Juba has reduced staff to essential personnel, while maintaining its core functions. A special flight, operated by Ethiopian Airlines, was arranged to evacuate foreign nationals from South Sudan. Meanwhile, Sudan reported its second COVID-19 death and has imposed a curfew to promote social distancing. Sudan's Health Minister Akram Ali Altom announced six new cases, with one subsequent death among them. The U.S. is also contributing to the global COVID-19 response through the State Department and USAID, with an initial $274 million in assistance.

U.N. Officials Report Deteriorating Human Rights in South Sudan

07 Feb 2020  |  Voice of America
U.N. officials have reported worsening human rights conditions in South Sudan as the deadline for forming a transitional unity government approaches. Three U.N. commissioners, Yasmin Sooka, Andrew Clapham, and Barney Afako, concluded their eighth mission to the country, noting little progress in the 2018 peace deal implementation. They visited displacement camps and met with various stakeholders, finding issues such as slow fund dispersion for security measures, child recruitment by armed forces, and increased localized violence. Arbitrary arrests and threats to free speech were also highlighted. The U.N. Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan will present its findings in March. Additionally, the U.N. Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Virginia Gamba, emphasized the need for immediate action to end violations against children and support their reintegration into society.

South Sudan Opposition Official Says 'Unified Force Not Ready'

06 Feb 2020  |  voaafrica.com
Angelina Teny, chair of the South Sudan Strategic Defense and Security Review Board, has stated that the unified military force stipulated by the peace agreement will not be ready by the February 22 deadline. The peace deal, signed in Addis Ababa in 2018 by President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar, requires the integration of government and opposition forces to form a single army, a process that has faced delays. Teny suggests an additional six weeks are needed to complete the training and screening of forces. The formation of a transitional unity government has been postponed twice due to unresolved issues, including the number of states and their boundaries. President Kiir's recent meeting with state governors and comments by Teny indicate ongoing efforts to resolve these disputes. South Africa's Deputy President David Mabuza's attempt to arbitrate was rejected by some opposition parties, and a proposal for demilitarization and third-party force deployment in Juba was not adopted. Kiir and Machar are expected to meet again to address the impasse.

South Sudan Opens Tribunal to Try National Security Operatives

05 Dec 2019  |  Voice of America
South Sudan has established a special tribunal to prosecute operatives of the National Security Service (NSS) accused of crimes, including human rights abuses. This move is seen as an effort to end impunity and rehabilitate the NSS's tarnished image. The tribunal was created under a provision of the National Security Service Act, signed into law by President Salva Kiir five years ago, which has been criticized for allowing security agents to arrest and detain citizens arbitrarily. Human rights advocates and legal experts have welcomed the tribunal but emphasize the need for due process and accessibility for all citizens. The tribunal, which includes a high court judge, is expected to hold NSS officers accountable and is seen as a potential turning point for the service's accountability.

Victims: Children stand among the rooftops of homes after the Yusuf Batir refugee camp in South Sudan was hit by flooding

28 Nov 2019  |  Mail Online
The article reports on the devastating floods in South Sudan, particularly affecting the Yusuf Batir refugee camp in Maban, which houses around 150,000 refugees from Sudan's Blue Nile region. The floods, described as the worst in decades, have destroyed homes and crops, leaving residents struggling to rebuild their lives. Ali Fonj, a refugee, narrates his ordeal of losing his home and the challenges of providing shelter for his family. The UNHCR is involved in relief efforts, distributing plastic sheets for temporary shelters. The floods have also raised health concerns due to contaminated water sources. The UN estimates that $61 million is needed for the response, with 600,000 people requiring immediate assistance. Despite the hardships, some locals are catching fish brought by the floodwaters, providing a small respite from the disaster.

Germany Donates Millions to WFP for South Sudan Flooding

12 Nov 2019  |  voaafrica.com
Germany has contributed $10.9 million to the WFP to support food aid in South Sudan, where severe flooding has affected nearly a million people. WFP country director Matthew Hollingworth highlighted the urgency of the situation, stating that $40 million is needed to assist 750,000 people over the next three months. The floods have destroyed homes, crops, and livestock, with many people seeking refuge on higher ground. The South Sudanese government has declared a state of emergency in several regions and called for humanitarian aid. The U.N. has requested $61 million for the crisis, and the U.N. Central Emergency Response Fund is considering additional support for the flood victims.

President Kiir Calls for Unity on Martyrs' Day

30 Jul 2019  |  voaafrica.com
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir reflected on the country's eight-year journey since independence, acknowledging that the nation has not lived up to the aspirations of the liberation struggle led by Dr. John Garang. Speaking on Martyrs' Day, Kiir urged South Sudanese citizens to unite in peace for the prosperity of future generations. He expressed regret over the political distractions and power struggles that have ensued. Kiir honored the sacrifices made during the fight for liberation from Sudan and emphasized the need to overcome poverty, illiteracy, and ignorance to restore dignity to the people. He assured the citizens of better days ahead and stressed the importance of a change in attitude to continue the liberation struggle and achieve peace. The event included a candlelight vigil to remember those who died in the struggle for independence.

South Sudan on High Alert for Ebola Virus

04 Jul 2019  |  voaafrica.com
Health officials in South Sudan are intensifying efforts to prevent the spread of Ebola into the country in response to a confirmed case in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), just 70 kilometers from the South Sudanese border. Dr. Pinyi Nyimol, the director general for disease control and emergency response services in South Sudan, has dispatched a team to Yei River state to enhance surveillance and preparedness. The confirmed Ebola case in DRC was a 40-year-old woman who had traveled from Beni, a region heavily affected by the outbreak. South Sudan has been on high alert for the past six months, with increased surveillance at border crossings, an Ebola treatment unit in Juba, and trained staff ready to respond to suspected cases.

Record Hunger in South Sudan Despite Peace Deal, Warn U.N. Agencies

14 Jun 2019  |  theglobepost.com
The United Nations agencies have reported a severe hunger crisis in South Sudan, with nearly seven million people facing acute food shortages despite a peace agreement that has reduced conflict. The World Food Program, Food and Agriculture Organization, and Unicef have indicated that 1.8 million people are experiencing an 'emergency' level of hunger, with more than five million others also struggling to find enough food. The situation has worsened from the previous year, with an increase of about two million people needing food aid. Economic instability, conflict, displacement, and high food prices have exacerbated the crisis. Although there has been some improvement in access to those in need, leading to the treatment of children with severe malnutrition, the agencies fear the situation could deteriorate further in the coming months.

South Sudan Reacts Angrily to Renewed UNSC Sanctions

31 May 2019  |  voaafrica.com
The United Nations Security Council has renewed sanctions on South Sudan, including an arms embargo, for another year. South Sudan's government, particularly Information Minister Michael Makuei, has criticized the decision, arguing that it undermines the government and aids non-signatory rebel groups. The sanctions were initially imposed following five years of conflict that resulted in numerous deaths and displacement. The Security Council believes the sanctions will encourage the government to implement the peace accord. Makuei insists that the government is upholding the agreement and has the right to self-defense through arms acquisition. Meanwhile, a Juba resident, Bidal Peter, supports the sanctions, suggesting they will save lives by reducing the arms used in internal conflicts. Aly Verjee of the U.S. Institute of Peace noted that no IGAD country publicly supports the arms embargo, reflecting regional opposition to the sanctions.

Returning South Sudanese Greeted by Continuous Infighting, Destruction

13 Mar 2019  |  theglobepost.com
The article discusses the severe displacement crisis in South Sudan, where 400,000 people have been internally displaced and over 2.2 million have fled as refugees since the conflict began in 2013. Despite the signing of a peace deal and a decrease in violence, the situation remains unstable, with renewed clashes and issues such as destroyed or occupied property. The UNHCR maintains a non-return policy, but acknowledges the right of South Sudanese to return. The article highlights the challenges faced by returnees, including lack of resources like water, and the South Sudanese government's inability to provide for IDPs and returnees. Personal stories of returnees and comments from UNHCR Spokesperson Eujin Byun and South Sudan Deputy Commissioner for Refugees Affairs John Dabi are included to illustrate the dire conditions and the government's efforts to document returnees for future aid.

Tens of thousands face starvation in South Sudan, despite peace deal

22 Feb 2019  |  theglobepost.com
The article reports on the severe food insecurity and ongoing civil war in South Sudan, despite a peace deal signed six months prior. The National Bureau of Statistics and U.N. agencies have indicated that nearly seven million people, or two-thirds of the country, are facing extreme hunger. Isaiah Chol Aruai, the chairman of the National Bureau of Statistics, and representatives from the World Food Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organization have called for increased aid to prevent a further crisis. The U.N. has classified 30,000 people in the Jonglei and Lakes regions as being in a 'catastrophe' level of hunger, with the potential for this number to increase to 50,000 without aid. The article also touches on the endemic sexual violence in South Sudan, with reports of widespread rape and physical violence, particularly in the northern Unity region.

Conflict-Related Sexual Violence Plagues Regions of South Sudan

15 Feb 2019  |  theglobepost.com
The U.N. Human Rights Office and the U.N. Mission in South Sudan have reported rampant sexual violence in South Sudan's northern Unity region, with victims including young girls, pregnant women, and nursing mothers. The report indicates a lack of accountability and pervasive impunity as contributing factors. Despite a peace agreement signed by President Salva Kiir, the situation remains volatile with continued reports of rape. The Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition and the South Sudan People’s Defence Forces are identified as the main perpetrators. Additionally, the Yei River State has seen displacement due to conflict, with people fleeing to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The UNHCR is working to assist refugees and internally displaced persons but faces challenges in accessing affected areas.

UN Concerned Over Excessive Force Against Sudanese Protesters

17 Jan 2019  |  theglobepost.com
The United Nations has expressed concern over the use of excessive force by Sudanese government forces against protesters. The protests, which began on December 19 due to rising bread prices, have escalated into anti-government demonstrations calling for President Omar Al-Bashir to step down. The U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, has called on the Sudanese government to respect the rights of citizens to peacefully protest. While the government reports 24 deaths, Human Rights Watch believes the toll may be higher. Over 800 arrests have been made, including journalists and political figures. Sudan is obligated to respect civil and political rights as a State party of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The U.N. is prepared to send a team to Sudan to advise on human rights obligations. President Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for alleged crimes in Darfur. Media in South Sudan face challenges in covering the unrest, with Al-Watan newspaper recently threatened by the South Sudan Media Authority.

South Sudan Media Authority Issues Warning to Newspaper Over Sudan Protest Coverage

13 Jan 2019  |  The Globe Post
The article discusses the situation in South Sudan where the South Sudan Media Authority has issued a warning to the independent newspaper Al-Watan, threatening it over its coverage of anti-government protests in neighboring Sudan. The editor-in-chief, Michael Rial Christopher, has been warned to apologize to the Sudanese government or face the risk of being shut down. This has sparked condemnation from civil society and the South Sudan Editors Forum, who argue that the Media Authority is violating the media law it is supposed to uphold. The article also touches on the broader media landscape in South Sudan, noting improvements since the establishment of the Media Authority but also highlighting ongoing challenges such as fear among journalists, lack of funding, and the need for institutionalizing parallel bodies like the Media Complain Council.

South Sudan Juveniles Escape Death Penalty Amid Age Inflation Claims

22 Dec 2018  |  The Globe Post
In South Sudan, the Human Rights Observatory intervened to prevent the execution of twelve juveniles who were accused of killing another teenager in a gang-related incident. The juveniles, aged ten to 17, were arrested and faced inflated ages by the investigator, which could have led to the death penalty. Instead, eight were sentenced to five years in a reformatory, and four received two-year probation. The juveniles will also pay 'blood compensation' to the victim's family. Amnesty International reported an increase in executions in South Sudan, including a child, despite a claimed moratorium since 2013. The government, however, denies any executions since 2011.

South Sudan military ‘did what was required’ by obtaining arms from Uganda

29 Nov 2018  |  The Defense Post
A report by London-based Conflict Armament Research (CAR) accuses the Ugandan government of diverting European weapons to South Sudan, exacerbating the conflict there. The report, based on a four-year investigation, documents the presence of ammunition and military equipment in South Sudan and allied forces in Sudan, which were originally supplied to Uganda by EU states. It details the transfer of aircraft from the US and Austria to South Sudan's military and notes secret shipments of arms from Sudan and China to opposition forces. The UN Security Council imposed an arms embargo on South Sudan in July, but the documented transfers occurred earlier. South Sudan's military spokesperson justified the acquisitions as necessary for defense, while CAR's Head of Regional Operations emphasized their role in reporting facts without judging the politics. The article was updated to correct a typo and clarify details about the arms shipments.

South Sudan military ‘did what was required’ by obtaining arms from Uganda

29 Nov 2018  |  thedefensepost.com
A report by London-based Conflict Armament Research (CAR) accuses the Ugandan government of diverting European weapons to South Sudan, exacerbating the conflict there. The report, based on a four-year investigation, documents the presence of ammunition and military equipment in South Sudan and allied forces in Sudan, which were originally supplied to Uganda by EU states. It details the transfer of aircraft from the US and Austria to South Sudan's military and notes secret shipments of arms from Sudan and China to opposition forces. The UN Security Council imposed an arms embargo on South Sudan in July, but the documented transfers occurred earlier. South Sudan's military spokesperson justified the acquisitions as necessary for defense, while CAR's Head of Regional Operations emphasized their role in reporting facts without judging the politics. The article was updated to correct a typo and clarify details about the arms shipments.

South Sudan Child Marriage Auction Sparks Outrage, Calls for Legal Reform

23 Nov 2018  |  The Globe Post
In South Sudan, activists are intensifying their fight against child marriage following the public auction of a 17-year-old girl on Facebook. The highest bidder, a business tycoon, offered 500 cows, $10,000, and three cars for the girl. High-profile individuals, including a Deputy Governor and a senior government official, were involved in the bidding. The girl, Nyalong, is now in hiding. Despite the illegality of child marriage under South Sudanese law, enforcement is weak, and customary practices persist. The National Alliance for Women Lawyers petitioned the National Assembly for action. Facebook removed the auction post for violating standards. Activists argue that the constitution's ambiguity and the allowance for customary laws create a legal dilemma. They call for adherence to international laws and setting a clear legal marriageable age. The incident highlights the challenges in eradicating child marriage by 2030, a goal South Sudan has committed to. Advocates demand accountability and the resignation of officials involved in the auction as a deterrent.

South Sudan Turns to Oil Industry Investors to Spark Economic Growth

21 Nov 2018  |  The Globe Post
South Sudan, the world's youngest nation, is hosting the Oil & Power Conference to attract foreign investors and boost its struggling economy, which has been affected by corruption and conflict. The country has significant oil reserves and is working to increase oil production to fund a peace agreement. Main operators in South Sudan's oil sector include China National Petroleum Corporation, Oil & Natural Gas Corporation of India, and Petronas of Malaysia. New potential investors like Russia's JSC Zarubezhneft and Turkey's Enprode are showing interest despite the high risks involved. The U.S. Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs has expressed concerns about the investment climate in South Sudan, while Chinese companies are very active in the country. The article discusses the challenges and opportunities for companies considering investing in South Sudan's oil industry.

South Sudan arms embargo

14 Nov 2018  |  thedefensepost.com
A United Nations panel has reported to the Security Council on violations of the arms embargo in South Sudan, highlighting sexual violence, hunger, and human rights abuses. The panel's interim report, covering September and October, included investigations in South Sudan and several other countries. South Sudan's military spokesperson, Major General Lul Ruai Koang, refuted the report's claims, stating that the national forces were trained by their own instructors and that the only foreign training was by Americans before the 2013 conflict. The report also mentioned foreign troop deployments in South Sudan and the use of natural resources like teak timber to finance rebel groups. Despite a peace deal signed in September, the U.N. experts observed continued violence and abuses. South Sudan is preparing to host the South Sudan Oil & Power 2018 conference, with major oil companies operating in the country.

South Sudan glimpses hope for peace as Machar and Kiir meet in Juba

31 Oct 2018  |  The Defense Post
In Juba, South Sudan, thousands celebrated the signing of a revitalized peace agreement aimed at ending the conflict between President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Dr. Riek Machar. Machar, who had fled Juba in 2016, returned to express his readiness to implement peace. Kiir also committed to the agreement, apologizing for the war and releasing political detainees. Despite concerns about mistrust between the leaders, regional figures, including Sudan's President Bashir and Uganda's President Museveni, showed support. The celebration was marked by hope among citizens for a lasting peace, though skepticism remains about the leaders' commitment and the country's economic stability. The United Nations Special Representative David Shearer highlighted the need for trust-building, and citizens, including church leaders and parliament members, called for tangible progress post-celebration.

South Sudan glimpses hope for peace as Machar and Kiir meet in Juba

31 Oct 2018  |  thedefensepost.com
In Juba, South Sudan, thousands celebrated the signing of a revitalized peace agreement aimed at ending the conflict between President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Dr. Riek Machar. Machar, who had fled Juba in 2016, returned to express his readiness to implement peace. Kiir also committed to the agreement, apologizing for the war and releasing political detainees. Despite concerns about mistrust between the leaders, regional figures, including Sudan's President Bashir and Uganda's President Museveni, showed support. The celebration was marked by hope among citizens for a lasting peace, though skepticism remains about the leaders' commitment and the country's economic stability. The United Nations Special Representative David Shearer highlighted the need for trust-building, and citizens, including church leaders and parliament members, called for tangible progress post-celebration.

South Sudan Guards Against Ebola Outbreak

17 May 2018  |  voaafrica.com
The World Health Organization has reported that the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has spread to the city of Mbandaka, which has over one million residents. This development raises concerns about the potential for a wider epidemic. The city is located approximately 150 kilometers from Bikoro, where the outbreak was initially identified. In response, South Sudan has implemented surveillance measures along its border with the DRC to screen travelers and prevent the spread of Ebola into its territory. South Sudan's Health Minister, Doctor Riek Gai Kok, emphasized the country's heightened alertness and preparedness, including awareness campaigns and emergency kits positioned near the border. Dr. Evans Liyosi of the WHO highlighted the importance of education in detecting and responding to suspected cases. An experimental vaccine is being offered in Congo, and there is a focus on early intensive treatment for those infected.

South Sudan Accuses ‘Troika’ of Controlling Peace Process

01 Mar 2018  |  voaafrica.com
South Sudan's Information Minister, Michael Makuei, has criticized the United States, Britain, and Norway for allegedly dominating the peace process in South Sudan. He claims that the East African bloc IGAD, which is supposed to mediate the process, is not in control, and instead, the agenda is set by the Troika countries, who fund the process. South Sudan has been in conflict since 2013, leading to a significant humanitarian crisis. Makuei rejects IGAD's proposals for a transitional government and insists on South Sudan's sovereignty. He also responds to U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley's comment that President Salva Kiir's government is 'an unfit partner' for peace. Makuei believes sanctions and an arms embargo will not force the government into an imposed peace agreement. His statements could potentially breach the cessation of hostilities agreement signed in December.

South Sudan's Army Repels Rebel Attack Near Capital

05 Jan 2018  |  voaafrica.com
South Sudan's army reported repelling a rebel attack near the capital, Juba, on Thursday night, which caused alarm among residents. The attack at the Kapuri military post was attributed to forces loyal to Colonel Chan Garang, a defector who joined rebel leader Riek Machar. Army spokesman Brigadier General Lul Ruai Koang stated that the army defended itself, resulting in several rebel casualties and one wounded soldier. The incident, lasting about 40 minutes, sparked fear in the community, disrupting the sense of peace expected in the new year. Despite a recent cease-fire agreement, accusations of violations persist, undermining efforts to maintain peace during holiday celebrations.

Fighting Resumes in South Sudan in Violation of Cease-fire

04 Jan 2018  |  voaafrica.com
Recent clashes in South Sudan's Yei River state have resulted in multiple fatalities, undermining a cease-fire agreement signed in Addis Ababa on December 21. The fighting involved government forces and rebels loyal to the former first vice president, Riek Machar. The South Sudanese army (SPLA) and the rebel group SPLM IO both reported casualties and accused each other of initiating the conflict. Despite the violence, both sides claim to be committed to the cease-fire, which was intended to halt hostilities and allow civilian and humanitarian movement. The Troika countries have warned the warring parties to respect the cease-fire, but the ongoing conflict suggests the agreement is faltering, continuing the four-year internal strife that has displaced over four million people.

S. Sudan President's Order Firing Governor Leads to Deadly Fighting

10 Feb 2017  |  voaafrica.com
In South Sudan, conflict erupted following President Salva Kiir's dismissal of Imatong state governor Nartisio Loluke Manir. The announcement led to clashes between government soldiers and state bodyguards at the governor's residence in Torit, resulting in two deaths and three injuries. Deputy Governor Margaret Itto referred to the violence as an isolated incident and expressed condolences to the affected families. Tensions in Torit remained high with military presence on the streets and public services shut down. Residents expressed mixed reactions to the governor's dismissal, with some lamenting the loss of peace Manir promoted, while others looked forward to the approach of the new governor, Tobiolo Alberio. Despite concerns, Pons Bismark emphasized the need for residents to respect the presidential decision.

UN- Chief Says donors hold back funding for South Sudan unless guns fall silence

Another Deadly road Ambush in South Sudan, this time on Football players

Deadly Attack in Raja Town Prompts Governor to Flee

16 Jun 2016  |  voaafrica.com
Fierce fighting erupted in Raja town, Lol state, South Sudan, involving government forces and an unidentified armed group. The conflict resulted in many civilians seeking refuge in a local Catholic church compound and the displacement of State Governor Rizik Zachariah Hassan and other officials. Eyewitnesses reported attacks on key locations, including a military base and the Governor’s house. The town of Raja has been largely abandoned, with significant property destruction reported. SPLA spokesman Brigadier Lul Ruai characterized the attackers as criminals exploiting the country's security issues, while William Ezekiel of the SPLM-IO denied their forces' involvement. Both spokesmen affirmed that the peace agreement's implementation would continue despite the violence.

Child Marriage Prevalent in South Sudan Despite Legal Protections

16 Jun 2015  |  voaafrica.com
The article discusses the prevalence of child marriage in South Sudan, highlighting that nearly half of the girls aged between 15 and 19 are married, with some being forced into marriage as young as 12. The practice is deeply rooted in the culture and is often seen as beneficial for families due to dowry traditions. Despite a 2008 law protecting children from early marriage, the practice persists, contributing to high maternal mortality rates and a gender gap in education. The article cites a Human Rights Watch report and includes comments from Arkangelo Amatu, Western Bahr el Ghazal's director for child protection, who emphasizes the need for legal reforms and better awareness of child protection laws. Children in Wau express their hopes for peace, education, and an end to violence and corruption in South Sudan.

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