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Archive for the tag “Intergovernmental Authority on Development”

South Sudan: Gunshot injuries remain high despite peace deal (08.07.2019)

Ninety-seven percent of admitted patients over a recent six-month period suffered gunshot wounds, an indication of the high prevalence and easy access to fire arms.

JUBA, South Sudan, July 8, 2019 – The number of patients admitted to International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)-supported surgical units in South Sudan with injuries from violence remains high ten months after the signing of a peace agreement.There has been only a small drop-off in the number of injuries from gunshot and other weapons at two ICRC-supported facilities (comparing the same six-month period year-on-year) since the signing of the latest peace deal in September 2018. Ninety-seven percent of admitted patients over a recent six-month period suffered gunshot wounds, an indication of the high prevalence and easy access to fire arms.

“We have seen a drop in fighting between parties to the conflict, a very hopeful sign. However, intercommunal violence—mostly linked to cattle raids and revenge killing—continues to threaten lives at an alarming level,” said James Reynolds, ICRC head of delegation in South Sudan.

Women and children remain particularly vulnerable; about 10 percent of patients seen from October 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019 were children under the age of 15, while just over 10 percent were women.

South Sudan marks eight years of independence on Tuesday. In recent months, many residents have returned home from abroad or other parts of the country. At the same time, intercommunal violence has forced thousands of South Sudanese to flee their homes. More than 50,000 families have received seeds and tools from the ICRC since the beginning of the year, but those who left home for reasons of safety will not be able to harvest their crops. Millions of South Sudanese are already facing severe food insecurity.

“Stability will be key for South Sudanese to recover from years of conflict. Any form of violence again prevents them from a normal, peaceful life,” Reynolds said. “We will continue to deliver emergency assistance to communities affected by violence, but we hope to put more of our efforts into helping people recover and prosper, not just survive.”

Note on the numbers: From October 2017 to March 2018 there were 392 patients admitted to ICRC-supported medical facilities in Ganyliel and Juba with gunshot/weapon-related injuries. From April to September 2018 (the rainy season), there were 291 patients. From October 2018 to March 2019 there were 382 patients.

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Somalia: Joint Press Release – Somalia Endorses Roadmap to Deny Terrorists Access to Arms (04.07.2019)

South Sudan: Media Authority – Press Release on Media Interference (04.07.2019)

South Sudan: CRN calls for the release of Radio Good News Director – Rumbek (03.07.2019)

UNMISS: Civilians deliberately and brutally targeted during surge in conflict in Central Equatoria (03.07.2019)

South Sudan: International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) facilitates release of 15 detainees (28.06.2019)

The ICRC was not involved in any negotiations that preceded the releases, which were initiated through a specific request by the parties to the conflict.

JUBA, South Sudan, June 28, 2019 – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has facilitated the release of 15 persons detained in relation to the conflict in South Sudan.The operation marks the second release of prisoners supervised by the ICRC since the signing of the latest peace agreement – the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS) – in September 2018.

“Our role in this week’s release was to first ensure that all detainees were handed over voluntarily and that they had the opportunity to confidentially share their concerns,” said James Reynolds, the ICRC’s head of delegation in South Sudan. “We safely transported the former detainees to Juba, at their request and with the consent of both parties.”

An ICRC medical staff member was present at the release to assess the detainees’ health condition and make sure they were fit to travel. Logistically, three ICRC aircraft were involved to make this release happen.

The ICRC was not involved in any negotiations that preceded the releases, which were initiated through a specific request by the parties to the conflict. “We offered our services to all sides of the conflict and confirmed our readiness to act as a neutral facilitator for the release of detainees as requested,” said Reynolds.

The ICRC was mentioned as a neutral facilitator for the release of detainees in the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, Protection of Civilians, and Humanitarian Access that was signed between the parties in December 2017 as well as a supervisor for the release of detainees in chapter II of the R-ARCSS. In addition to this week’s release, the ICRC facilitated several release operations last year, including last October with the release of 16 persons.

The ICRC also regularly visits detainees in the places where they are being held in order to monitor their conditions and treatment. The organization works in a confidential way with those in charge of detention matters to discuss possible issues of concern related to the conditions in which detainees are held and their treatment.

Communique of the 68th Session of the IGAD Council of Ministers on Sudan and South Sudan (19.06.2019)

UNHCR Somalia stands in solidarity with millions forced to flee (20.06.2019)

Mogadishu, 20 June– On the occasion of World Refugee Day, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Somalia pays tribute to the millions of people forcibly displaced all over the world.

World Refugee Day is marked on 20 June each year to highlight the courage and resilience of millions of people forced to flee war, conflict and persecution. The day is also an opportunity to express gratitude to governments and host populations that offer asylum, support and protection to refugees.

The theme for 2019 is “inclusion; inclusion of refugees, IDPs and stateless people”. This year, UNHCR is also rallying people around the world to honour the resilience and determination of displaced people in a global movement dubbed, “Step With Refugees”. The campaign invites people to step in solidarity with refugees by either walking, running, dancing, swimming or cycling. Regional organizations are also taking note of the crisis. The African Union declared 2019 as the year of Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced People (IDPs).

Globally, the displacement crisis in recent years has been unprecedented. At least one person is forcibly uprooted from their homes around the world every two seconds. In total, 70.8 million have been forced to flee their homes globally – among them 25.9 million refugees.

“We are now witnessing the highest levels of displacement on record; and host countries need to ensure the active inclusion of refugees and other displaced families in their countries’ development agenda. Refugees and others in similar situations bring with them great skills and can make meaningful contributions in their communities. Giving them equal opportunities to use their skills also promotes self-reliance and empowerment.” said Takeshi Moriyama, UNHCR Acting Representative.

Somalia is at the epicentre of the refugee and displacement crisis. The country remains one of the top five refugee producing countries in the world with most of its nationals seeking asylum in neighbouring Ethiopia, Kenya and Yemen. More than 2.6 people are also internally displaced mainly due to conflict, drought, floods and evictions. The majority of the internally displaced are located in Banadir, Bay, Sool, and Gedo and Bari regions.

Despite its own internal challenges, Somalia is generously hosting over 34,000 refugees and asylum seekers largely from Ethiopia and Yemen. They mainly live in Woqooyi Galbeed, Bari and Banadir regions. Somali nationals have also been returning home spontaneously from countries of asylum as well as through the UNHCR supported Voluntary Repatriation (Volrep) and the Assisted Spontaneous Return (ASR) Programs. UNHCR has received more than 126,000 returnees from 12 countries including Kenya, Yemen, Djibouti, Libya, Sudan, Eritrea, Tunisia, Angola, Gambia, Pakistan and Cambodia.

Somalia: The Foreign Correspondents’ Association of East Africa and Somali Journalists Syndicate condemn the recent harassment of journalists in Somalia (19.06.2019)

Drought in Somalia and Somaliland: Lives Teetering on the Edge (18.06.2019)

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