Displaced South Sudanese women sit at dawn in the grounds of St. Theresa’s cathedral in Juba, on January 13, 2014. About 32,000 refugees have fled to Uganda and a total of around 10,000 others have gone to Ethiopia and Kenya, while more than 350,000 are internally displaced within South Sudan, the United Nations says. (Phil Moore/AFP)
Three children walk through a spontaneous camp for internally displaced persons at the United Nations Mission in South Sudan base in Juba, on January 9, 2014. Over 17,000 people are living at the base, with new arrivals every day, due to ongoing conflict in the world’s youngest nation.
[Credit : Phil Moore/AFP/Getty Images]
One of the few to have a mosquito net, a displaced family who fled the recent fighting between government and rebel forces in Bor by boat across the White Nile, sit under it after waking up in the morning in the town of Awerial, South Sudan on Jan. 2, 2014.
[Credit : Ben Curtis/AP]
Displaced people who fled the recent fighting between government and rebel forces in Bor by boat across the White Nile, prepare to sleep in the open at night in the town of Awerial, South Sudan on Jan. 1, 2014. The International Red Cross said Wednesday that the road from Bor to the nearby Awerial area “is lined with thousands of people” waiting for boats so they could cross the Nile River and that the gathering of displaced is “is the largest single identified concentration of displaced people in the country so far”.
[Credit : Ben Curtis/AP]
Juba, South Sudan | December 29, 2013
A man named John sat and stared into the distance, a blank expression on his face. Stephen Nyak, a fellow Nuer who was seeking help for the man, approached an Associated Press journalist in hopes of getting assistance.
Nyak, relaying John’s story, said the man was caught in a group of Nuer early in the morning of Dec. 16, hours after the violence first erupted. Nearly all of the men in the group — said to number close to 300 — were shot and killed, though John survived. John says he survived the fusillade of bullets but was forced to drink the blood from a dead body near him, before the gunmen let him free, Nyak said. Whether the story was true, it was clear John was not well. Nyak said the men in the camp fear for their lives. To exit is to risk death, they say.
Some 25,000 people live in two hastily arranged camps for the internally displaced in Juba and nearly 40,000 are in camps elsewhere in the country, two weeks after violence broke out in the capital and a spiralling series of ethnically-based attacks coursed through the nation, killing at least 1,000 people. — Read More
Photos were taken by AP photographer Ben Curtis in a United Nations compound which has become home to thousands of people displaced by the recent fighting in the capital Juba.
"A week ago, Simon K, a 20-year-old student living in the capital of South Sudan, was arrested by men in military uniforms. He was asked a question that has taken on deadly importance in the world’s newest country in the past seven days: incholdi – “What is your name?” in Dinka, the language of the country’s president and its largest ethnic group.
Those who, like Simon, were unable to answer, risked being identified as Nuer, the ethnic group of the former vice-president now leading the armed opposition and facing the brunt of what insiders are describing as the world’s newest civil war.
Simon K was taken to a police station in the Gudele market district of Juba, where he was marched past several dead bodies and locked in a room with other young men, all Nuer. “We counted ourselves and found we were 252,” he told the Guardian. “Then they put guns in through the windows and started to shoot us.”
The massacre continued for two days with soldiers returning at intervals to shoot again if they saw any sign of life. Simon was one of 12 men to survive the assault by covering themselves in the bodies of the dead and dying.” — Read on
An estimated 50,000 civilians are now hiding in five UN bases across the two-and-a-half-year-old nation. Some 24,000 civilians have gathered in the bush in Lakes States, aid workers said. Tens of thousands more have sought sanctuary in churches, including 5,000 in a single Catholic Church in the capital.
The violence began after a fight between Dinka and Nuer soldiers in the presidential guard on December 15, igniting a simmering political power struggle in South Sudan’s ruling party and sparking widespread ethnic killings. UN officials said the death toll has risen above 1,000. The reports of mass graves strengthen fears that the death toll in the conflict will grow.
Photos were taken by Reuters photographer James Akena at the United Nations Mission in Sudan facility in Jabel, on the outskirts of capital Juba, on December 23, and at Tomping United Nations base near Juba international airport, where some 12,000 people from the Nuer tribe have sought refuge at, on December 24, 2013.