UN says attacks on aid workers rise in South Sudan in Q2

South Sudan

The number of violence attacks on humanitarian workers operating in South Sudan more than doubled in the second quarter compared to the first quarter of 2021, the United Nations humanitarian agency said on Tuesday.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said violence against humanitarian personnel and assets increased from 52 to 111 reported incidents, compared to the first quarter.

Ninety-five aid workers were relocated due to insecurity, impacting humanitarian assistance to people, compared with 66 aid workers relocated in the same period of 2020, OCHA said in a report released in Juba.

According to the UN humanitarian agency, four aid workers were killed between April and June, bringing the total to 128 since conflict broke out in 2013.

OCHA said a total of 188 reported access incidents took place in the second quarter, compared with 163 reported during the same period last year.

OCHA attributed the increase in access incidents to a surge in attacks against humanitarian staff and assets and continued active hostilities and sub-national violence, particularly in Eastern and Central Equatoria and Jonglei.

According to OCHA, over half of all reported incidents in the reporting period took place in these three regions.

The UN agency said humanitarian access to people in need worsened between April and June, creating a challenging operating environment.

It said persistent roadside ambushes had serious consequences on civilians and aid workers.

“A total of 37 roadside ambushes were reported between April and June as compared to 24 in the first quarter, with staff being robbed and supplies looted,” it said. Enditem

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