South Sudan accused of ignoring crimes committed by its forces

South Sudanese soldiers in a pick-up vehicle | File photo

October 7th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan government has been ignoring war crimes committed by its troops in states of the Greater Upper Nile region, a report released today by Amnesty International said.

South Sudan descended into a bloody civil war in December 2013 following a disputed national convention of the Ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) party which led to a split in the army.

Many international organizations have reported ethnic-based killings by the country’s army against ethnic minorities since the eruption of one of the worse civil wars in the continent.

From Juba to Malakal, Wau, Bentiu and other places, a trail of monstrous crimes against civilians have been committed. South Sudan’s government has responded with investigation committees whose reports rarely see the light of day, and when they do, their findings largely ignore crimes committed by government forces,” Joan Nyanyuki, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes said.

The authorities’ failure to prosecute and punish the perpetrators of crimes under international law, committed by both government and opposition armed groups necessitates a meaningful and effective alternative justice mechanism for the people of South Sudan.

Following the South Sudanese government’s failure or refusal to take action against the horrific crimes committed in the past six years, the African Union must now set a deadline for the authorities to sign the relevant legal documents for the establishment of the hybrid court. The deadline given to South Sudan should not exceed a period of six months.

If they fail to meet that deadline, the African Union should unilaterally establish an ad-hoc tribunal for South Sudan to create an impartial mechanism that will deliver justice to the countless victims of crimes committed during the on-going conflict.”

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