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20 Feb 2018 description
report Voice of America


Two communities in South Sudan’s Jonglei State have signed a peace agreement to end a deadly conflict over grazing land that has claimed 37 lives in the past two months.

The Jonglei State deputy governor says the communities from Bor South County agreed to create a buffer zone so security forces can be deployed to keep the two clans apart. The agreement signed last week followed talks mediated by Jonglei State officials and South Sudan Defense Minister Kuol Manyang Juk.

15 Feb 2018 description
report Voice of America

Gift Friday

JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN — More foreign troops arrived in South Sudan's capital as part of the U.N. Security Council-mandated Regional Protection Force (RFP). But a South Sudanese analyst says the additional peacekeepers will have no impact on the country's deadly conflict if they are not deployed outside of Juba.

14 Feb 2018 description
report Voice of America

Deng Ghai Deng

Daniel Martin Friday

BOR AND YEI TOWN, SOUTH SUDAN — Hundreds of residents of the Jonglei State capital of Bor are sleeping under the stars after local authorities demolished their houses Tuesday to make way for new roads.

Residents awoke to the sound of a bulldozer destroying their houses in the Marol area, where many South Sudanese had settled illegally after fighting forced them from their homes. The displaced say they have nowhere to go and want the government to give them land on which to settle.

07 Feb 2018 description
report Voice of America

February 06, 2018 4:55 PM
Nabeel Biajo Waakhe Simon Wudu

JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN — Pro-government protesters beat at least two journalists Tuesday in South Sudan's capital. One of the journalists, a female Westerner, was repeatedly struck in the face.

Hundreds of people — including youths, women and tribal chiefs —denounced the U.S. decision last week to restrict arms transfers to South Sudan. The South Sudan Council of Chiefs organized the demonstrations, and some of its members rode on trucks through Juba's streets, urging residents to protest.

27 Dec 2017 description
report Voice of America

ABA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO — Since South Sudan's government captured a rebel base last week in the country's southwest, hundreds of refugees have poured into Democratic Republic of Congo.

Among them may be rebels, and the Congolese army, wary of conflict spilling into their nation, is arresting any suspected fighters.

Refugees, however, say innocent young men are being caught up in the crackdown, too.

23 Dec 2017 description
report Voice of America

Jason Patinkin

ABA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO — In the Meri refugee camp in the Democratic Republic of Congo, more than 30,000 South Sudanese refugees yearn to return to their homeland, which has been ripped apart by a four-year civil war.

The new cease-fire signed Thursday between the government of President Salva Kiir and different rebel groups should raise hopes of peace in the war-torn country.

But the refugees in Meri camp who spoke to VOA said they are not celebrating just yet.

20 Dec 2017 description
report Voice of America

December 20, 2017 12:39 PM
Jason Patinkin

ABA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO — Hundreds of South Sudanese refugees entered the Democratic Republic of Congo this week after South Sudanese government forces captured a rebel base near the border.

Amid gunfire late Sunday, South Sudanese troops entered Lasu town, which had been the rebels' second general headquarters. The rebels pulled out the next day.

02 Dec 2017 description
report Voice of America

December 01, 2017 9:49 AM
Eskender Frew

The government of Ethiopia says it will close all 27 refugee camps in its territory over the next 10 years and integrate residents into local communities.

"There will be a gradual transition from a camp-based protection model to supporting refugees directly within host communities,” Zeynu Jemal, deputy director of the Administration for Refugees and Returnees Affairs (ARRA), told VOA's Horn of Africa Service.

16 Sep 2017 description
report Voice of America

Deng Ghai Deng

BOR, SOUTH SUDAN — An overflowing Nile River and heavy rains flooded the South Sudanese town of Bor this week, sweeping away homes and leaving hundreds of families without food or shelter.

Marth Aluel Akuei, a resident of the Lekyak area just outside Bor town, used mud to build a dyke around her damaged home. The three grass-thatched structures she owned — known as tukuls — were washed away in the flood.

01 Sep 2017 description
report Voice of America

Activists are asking the Department of Homeland Security to extend Temporary Protected Status for over 1,000 Sudanese and South Sudanese nationals living in the United States.

By September 3, DHS is expected to decide whether to extend, redesignate or terminate the program for the two countries.

The current period ends November 2 for 49 South Sudanese and 1,039 Sudanese TPS beneficiaries.

Patrice Lawrence of UndocuBlack Network, an advocacy group for undocumented black immigrants, wants an extension.

'Stuck in this status'

03 Aug 2017 description
report Voice of America


Witnesses and military officials in South Sudan said at least six people were killed in an attack Wednesday on a bus convoy traveling between Juba, the capital, and Nimule, on the country’s southern border with Uganda.

Four civilians and two national security service members escorting the convoy were killed, a spokesman for the SPLA (Sudan People’s Liberation Army) told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus.

29 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

Sora Halake

Last year, aid agencies and the Kenyan government set up a new settlement for refugees in the northwestern town of Kalobeyei. The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) made a point of saying that Kalobeyei would not be a refugee camp. Instead, it would be an "integrated community," where refugees and local residents could do business together, live in harmony and access services offered by UNHCR through local partners.

But for Galgalo Arero, an Ethiopian refugee and father of three, the real Kalobeyei is very different than the dream.

27 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

Waakhe Simon Wudu

JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN — Civil society activists say a move to exclude South Sudan rebel leader Riek Machar from a regional peace process will ensure that South Sudan remains engulfed in war.

Ministers of the East African bloc IGAD said Monday that Machar will not be invited to the next meeting for the peace process, which is aimed at revitalizing a 2015 peace agreement between the rebels and South Sudanese government.

19 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

Nabeel Biajo

Waakhe Simon Wudu

JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN — South Sudan's President Salva Kiir has declared a state of emergency in his home state of Gogrial and parts of three other states where clashes have raged for months between clan-based militias.

The country's information minister, Michael Makuei, said the army would be given powers to stop the fighting in Gogrial and the states of Tonj, Wau and Aweil East. 

15 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

Sora Halake

A recently arrived species of armyworm has spread to 21 African countries and threatens the continent's main food staple, maize, report experts from the U.S. Agency for International Development.

USAID senior biotechnology advisor Joseph Huesing says the fall armyworms -- transported from their usual habitat in the U.S. state of Florida or the Caribbean -- are attacking maize crops all over sub-Saharan Africa.

12 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

By Salem Solomon

WASHINGTON — Aid agencies say they welcome the Trump administration's promise of nearly $640 million to help four countries dealing with rampant food insecurity but say the pledge is overdue and taking too long to reach the people who desperately need it.

President Donald Trump announced the pledge at the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany last weekend, several weeks after Congress approved the expenditures for Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.

U.S. response questioned

01 Jul 2017 description
report Voice of America

Lisa Schlein

GENEVA — "I was 12 years old when I was raped. I did not understand what was happening."

Nelle is now 36 years old. But in 1993 when war broke out in Burundi, armed men came to her village near the capital, Bujumbura. They killed her mother and father and six siblings. She was raped, but she survived.

“I saw people were killing each other. They were running away and killing each other. I hid myself under dead bodies for five days,” she said.

Difficult story

20 Jun 2017 description
report Voice of America

Halima Athumani

ADJUMANI, UGANDA — The nearly one million South Sudanese refugees in Uganda face shortages of food, water and medical care, but they have also brought with them the trauma of the war they fled. Aid agencies are struggling to meet the need for counseling for survivors of gender-based violence.

She was attacked in South Sudan six months ago, but she is still afraid to answer the door. VOA met this 35-year-old woman at the Pagirinya refugee settlement in Uganda. She spoke through a translator.

20 Jun 2017 description
report Voice of America

Halima Athumani

ADJUMANI, UGANDA — This week, Uganda welcomes U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and other high-level international guests and donors for the two day Refugee Solidarity Conference (Thursday 6/22 and Friday 6/23). The conference in Kampala hopes to raise $8 billion to support refugees in Uganda for the next four years.

At the border separating Uganda from South Sudan, exhausted women and children arrive daily, hungry and dehydrated. Aid workers give them fortified biscuits.

19 Jun 2017 description
report Voice of America

Halima Athumani

ADJUMANI, UGANDA —It is estimated Uganda has one doctor for every 24,000 citizens. The nurse-to-population ratio is not much better, one for every 11,000 people, and much of that staff is concentrated in urban areas.

Now add 1.2 million refugees.