Civilians in Yei prefers seeking safety from rebels – NGOs

Civilians hiding in teh jungle as they flee gunshots in an undisclosed locaion in South Sudan (File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

February 17th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudanese civilians in the country’s Yei River State are preferring to seek safety from holdout rebels rather than the government, rights and humanitarian organizations have said.

Last week, the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General and the head of the UNMISS, David Shearer told a news conference in New York that a peace agreement signed in September last year helped to reduce political violence in the country.

Shearer however said some parts of the country like the Central Equatoria state’s Yei River has continued to witness fighting between government forces and troops belonging to holdout rebel forces.

Speaking to the Nyamilepedia on Saturday, one humanitarian worker who conditioned that his name remain unpublished said humanitarian organizations are facing difficulties in reaching out to civilians in remote jungles of the state where they seeks safety from the rebels.

“We are facing challenges in reaching out to civilians in remote forest of the Yei river state. Most of the displaced prefers seeking safety from the rebels who are deep in the Equatorian jungles,” the humanitarian worker told the Nyamilepedia.

The government in September 2018 signed a peace deal with a number of opposition groups in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to end the ongoing five-year old civil war.

Some opposition groups such as the National Salvation Front (NAS) led by Gen. Thomas Cirilo declined to sign the agreement citing lack of will by regional mediators to address their concerns before the signing of the agreement and has since been fighting the government.