(Juba, 2 November 2020) The Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan, Alain Noudéhou, has condemned the killing of an aid worker in the greater Pibor area.
On 29 October, a team of Plan International’s humanitarian workers was attacked by unidentified armed men on a road near Pibor town. One aid worker was killed on the scene and another one was seriously injured with a gunshot wound. The team was returning to Pibor on foot after delivering critical nutrition services to children and new mothers affected by violence and flooding in the area.
The nutrition programme, funded by the South Sudan Humanitarian Fund, is temporarily suspended following the incident. “I strongly condemn this attack and the killing of yet another humanitarian worker, this time in the Pibor area. I call once again for authorities and communities at all levels to guarantee the safety and security of aid workers and the people they serve. The perpetrators of this violent act must be brought to justice and be held accountable,” Mr. Noudéhou said. “This year in South Sudan, eight humanitarian workers have already lost their lives while providing aid to people in need. This is unacceptable,” the Humanitarian Coordinator added.
Thousands of humanitarian workers – most of them South Sudanese – take daily risks to deliver much-needed assistance to women, men and children across the country. Half of all reported humanitarian access incidents in 2020 have involved violence, or threat thereof, against humanitarian workers and assets. Jonglei State and greater Pibor are among the areas most affected by the ongoing flooding and food insecurity. Inter-communal and sub-national violence and attacks on aid workers are seriously hampering the delivery of humanitarian assistance and deepening vulnerabilities faced by communities in these areas. “Humanitarian workers need a safe and secure operating environment to deliver much-needed humanitarian services to people. The violence and the targeting of humanitarian actors must stop,” Mr. Noudéhou stressed.
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