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Safety & Security

This page brings together the most relevant information on aid worker safety and security from ReliefWeb's extensive collection of humanitarian content. The two main columns show substantive reports such as safety manuals and guidelines, statistical reports on security incidents involving aid workers, and analysis of the implications of engaging with private security providers and the role of peacekeepers in humanitarian interventions.

All Updates on Safety & Security

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08 Jun 2018 description


  • Fighting in Unity displaces populations, worsens humanitarian needs

  • Famine risk increases in parts of Eastern Equatoria, Jonglei, Unity, and Western Bahr el Ghazal

  • USAID/FFP partner WFP reaches 2.6 million people with emergency food assistance in April


06 Jun 2018 description

More civilians are without food in more places than ever before in the history of South Sudan. An upsurge in fighting, lack of access and attacks on aid workers batters already food insecure communities. "The UN's deadly prediction of record numbers of hungry people in South Sudan is already unfolding from what I'm seeing," said Jan Egeland, Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), who is currently visiting the country.

04 Jun 2018 description
report UN News Service

People are suffering “on an almost unimaginable scale” in South Sudan, the United Nations emergency relief chief said on Monday, adding that he welcomed the announcement by the United States that it is to review the amount of assistance it provides to the war-torn country.

31 May 2018 description

Thursday, May 31, 2018 — Juba/London: Thousands of people caught between the frontlines in South Sudan are unable to reach basic services including food, water and essential healthcare says the medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors without Borders (MSF).

23 May 2018 description


• UN Humanitarian Chief urges parties to cease hostilities, protect civilians and aid workers.

• Partners scale-up cholera prevention campaigns to mitigate the risk of outbreaks during the current rainy season.

• Detained aid workers released, NGO suspends operation due to insecurity.

• Armed groups release more than 200 children in Pibor.

• Over 20,000 South Sudanese have fled insecurity and hunger to Ethiopia as refugees since January 2018.


16 May 2018 description

(Juba, 16 May 2018): UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Mark Lowcock, concluded his two-day mission to South Sudan today, calling for all parties to cease hostilities, amidst fresh fighting that has displaced tens of thousands of people in multiple locations across the country.

During his two-day visit, Mr. Lowcock met with Government officials, members of SPLA-in Opposition, humanitarian agencies, and partners. He also visited people affected by the crisis in Juba, Yei Town and Mundu. The latter is an SPLA-IO controlled area.

08 May 2018 description
report UN Security Council



Country’s Representative Calls Sanctions Proposal by Panel of Experts ‘Biased’, Saying It Lays Ground for International Sanctions  

The cessation of hostilities in South Sudan, agreed in 2017, showed no sign of implementation, the Under‑Secretary‑General for Peacekeeping Operations told the Security Council today, saying a ceasefire was “a distant prospect” amid disagreements over its modalities and wider transitional security arrangements.

04 May 2018 description


  • Intensified fighting in Unity displaces populations, exacerbates needs

  • Armed actor attacks result in at least three aid worker deaths during April

  • USAID provides $103 million in additional funding to support emergency operations in South Sudan


30 Apr 2018 description

Juba – A team working for the international medical organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) were victims of a violent armed robbery on Tuesday 24 April. The robbery took place in an area south of Mundri town in South Sudan. MSF condemns this brutal act.

While the MSF team was delivering much-needed healthcare to remote areas of Mundri, a group of 10 unidentified armed men stopped their convoy, physically assaulted the team, threatened them with violence and took their personal belongings, along with medical supplies and other MSF property.

30 Apr 2018 description
report UN Children's Fund

NEW YORK/JUBA, South Sudan, 30 April 2018 – Ten aid workers who had been detained by an armed group since Wednesday, 25 April, outside of South Sudan’s Yei town were released today. The group returned safely to Juba. They have undergone medical checks and are said to be in good health. “It’s a great relief to have our colleagues safely back with us,” said Henrietta H. Fore, UNICEF Executive Director.

30 Apr 2018 description


• Three national aid workers killed and partners suspend operations due to renewed fighting in Unity.

• Seven aid workers released in Lainya County, while ten others are missing outside Yei town in Central Equatoria.

• More than 200 children released by armed groups in South Sudan.

• Over 70 per cent of the civilians returning from displacement find their homes partially or severely destroyed, according to a new study.

30 Apr 2018 description

Juba/Geneva (ICRC) – Ten aid workers taken by an armed group last week were returned to Juba today by a team from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

The South Sudanese aid workers were transported by ICRC aircraft from an area around Yei to the capital, Juba.

“The ICRC has a long-standing record as a neutral intermediary in these kinds of situations. We are pleased that these ten aid workers will now be able to return to their families,” said François Stamm, the head of delegation for the ICRC in South Sudan.

30 Apr 2018 description

(Juba, 30 April 2018): Ten aid workers who were detained while on an assessment mission near Yei, Central Equatoria, have been freed. The humanitarian workers were held by an armed opposition group in South Sudan for more than five days, since 25 April.

The humanitarian staff, all nationals, included one from UNOCHA, two from UNICEF, one from the South Sudanese Development Organisation, (SSDO), two from ACROSS, three from Plan International and one from Action Africa Help (AAH).

28 Apr 2018 description


• WFP and UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) organized a launch workshop for an upcoming Joint Assessment Mission (JAM) for South Sudan to assess the food and non-food needs of refugees and other populations of concern.

• WFP has so far prepositioned 85,000 mt - equivalent to 60 percent of the 140,000 mt target. Deliveries are ongoing to reach the target before the onset of the main rain season.

Situation Update

28 Apr 2018 description


Silver Spring, Maryland—The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is mourning the death of one of its employees killed on Tuesday, April 24, in Tali County, South Sudan. Mr. Agoyo Robert was working for ADRA South Sudan’s Health Pooled Fund (HPF) project, an initiative aimed at extending health services to thousands of people in the country.

26 Apr 2018 description

(Juba, 26 April 2018): Ten aid workers have gone missing outside South Sudan’s Yei town in Central Equatoria region.

Their convoy was en route to Tore from Yei town, early on 25 April to conduct a humanitarian needs assessment. Their whereabouts and well-being are unknown. The Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan, Alain Noudehou demanded their swift return.

23 Apr 2018 description

Juba (ICRC) – A distribution of seeds and farming tools for approximately 24,600 people was interrupted after armed men attacked the International Committee of the Red Cross' compound in Leer, South Sudan, forcing staff to evacuate and program activities to be suspended.

"We are shocked and disappointed by this attack, which is not only an attack on the ICRC, but also on the people we are here to assist", says Francois Stamm, ICRC's Head of Delegation in South Sudan.

13 Apr 2018 description
report Christian Aid

Christian Aid has issued the following statement in response to deadly attacks on staff members from two South Sudanese NGOs, including a partner organisation:

"Last weekend a staff member of UNIDO, one of Christian Aid's partners in South Sudan, was shot and killed near Leer in Unity, where they had been working in a health facility.

"In a separate attack a staff member of Hope Restoration, an organisation close to Christian Aid, was killed in Bentiu, also in Unity.