Aug. 3 (EUROPA PRESS) –
The United Nations has reported an increase of more than 200 percent in cases of conflict-related sexual violence during the second quarter of the year, compared to the same period in 2021, although it has recognized that the total number of civilian victims of violence has registered a decrease in general lines.
The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has indicated that during this period it has registered 922 civilian victims, 15 percent less than at this stage in 2021, although it has warned of a 218 percent spike in violence. conflict-related sex.
“The exponential increase in sexual and gender-based violence is absolutely unacceptable and impacts women and girls more seriously,” explained the head of UNMISS, Nicholas Haysom, who stressed that “this violence that divides communities and makes it difficult to reconciliation has to end.”
For this reason, the mission has highlighted that it is supporting the authorities in their efforts to guarantee accountability and give survivors and victims access to justice through a series of special and mobile courts in the African country.
UNMISS has further emphasized that, as in the first quarter of 2022, inter-communal clashes have been the main cause of civilian casualties, accounting for 60 per cent of the total.
Thus, it has detailed that 38 percent of the victims were caused by the Army and the former rebel group Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition (SPLM-IO), before denouncing that both “depend more and more on militias allies participating in the conflict”.
The mission has highlighted the deterioration of the situation in the state of Unity (south) and has detailed that between April 1 and May 31, more than 170 civilians died, including 49 children, due to the clashes registered in the area, where 84 cases of rape or gang rape were also documented.
UNMISS has therefore called on the South Sudanese authorities to “promptly investigate” human rights violations and abuses and to ensure that those responsible are held accountable, before requesting a “full” application of the 2018 peace agreement.