SRSG Zerrougui Condemns Grave Violations Comitted Against Children in South Sudan

Leila Zerrougui, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, strongly condemns the attack of Thursday on the Internally Displaced Persons sheltering at the UN Protection of Civilians site in Bor, in South Sudan’s Jonglei State.

“Children continue to be victims of the recent conflict in South Sudan and this must stop,” said the Special Representative.

Since the recent conflict began in December, the United Nations has received credible reports of children being killed, and attacks being carried out against schools and hospitals. In addition, children are being recruited and used by all parties to conflict.

These attacks and violations not only leave a permanent scar on these children, but they also affect their overall sense of safety and security, especially when places that they go to in desperation, and are designated as safe places of shelter, also become places of attacks.

Reports from the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) stated that dozens of armed youth stormed the shelter in Bor and started shooting indiscriminately leaving 58 people killed and over 100 injured. Preliminary reports indicate that at least eight children were killed and several others were injured during this attack.

“I am also very concerned about the ongoing reports of underage recruitment in South Sudan and reports indicating that the attackers of the UN Shelter were armed youth. I call on all parties to immediately cease violations and on the government to respect the commitments set out in the Action Plan. These violations should be investigated and perpetrators should be held accountable. These crimes against children cannot go unpunished,” declared Leila Zerrougui.

The Special Representative wishes to express her support to the families and communities of the victims and wishes for the swift recovery of the injured.

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For additional information, please contact:
Stephanie Tremblay, Communications Officer, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict,
+1-212-963-8285 (office),
+1-917-288-5791 (mobile),
tremblay@un.org