Fighting in South Sudan threatens more lives from both war and food insecurity
Nov 2, 2011
Even after a 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, fighting between the Sudanese Peoples Liberation Movement (SPLM-N) and the National Congress Party in South Sudan rages on, leaving citizens to suffer from food security crises and a lack of access to clean water and shelter, The Sunday Independent reports.
"You know, we stay for six years in peace but the people are suffering," Stephen Amad, a brigadier general of the SPLM-N political party told the publication. "Because they don't have medicine, they don't have roads, don't have water. This is the peace? This is not peace. And they don’t have enough food, clothes [and more]."
Aside from having a lack of crucial amenities for survival, hospitals in the regions are also increasingly overwhelmed. Kurmuk hospital in southern Sudan is struggling to keep up with the demand of patients who come in suffering war related wounds, Eye Witness News reports.
Dr. Evan Atar - the only doctor in Kumruk - has treated more than 600 patients for shrapnel related injuries since violence in the region intensified in September. Now, those coming in not only suffer from their injuries but also as they are being helped, as the hospital has run out of anaesthetics. According to Atar, common goods like cotton, gauze and saline solution are also almost gone, and without aid soon, conditions could get far worse.
The most recent six months worth of supplies dropped off by humanitarian workers lasted just six weeks, the news outlet reports.
"We are running short of everything - drugs, dressings," Atar told the publication. "The problem is that there is no way we can get the drugs in here now because of the Antonovs bombing the area, making it very dangerous to fly supplies in from Kenya."
As conditions worsen, nearly 2,000 Sudanese civilians have settled in the Ethiopian area of Kurmuk to avoid air attacks that threaten entire villages, according to The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).
"They tell us they fled bombings and fear of bombings by Antonov planes in areas including Bau, Sali and Dinduro, all located between Kurmuk and the Blue Nile capital, Damazine," said Adrian Edwards, the UNHCR spokesman.
Edwards added that UNHCR believes that more than 28,000 citizens have fled South Sudan since the attacks began. The group is working to expand refugee camps in Ethiopia to try and meet their needs.
Despite global efforts by humanitarian groups, the battles rage on. An end to the fighting seems far off, leaving civilians without their homes, their farms and crops, or the means to survive.