South Sudan’s Jonglei State Suffering from Conflict, Flooding

file photo of members of the Lou Nuer gather under the shade of a tree in Ethiopia after fleeing from South Sudan’s Jonglei state. (Credits: UNHCR/S.Tessema)

Jonglei, the largest state in South Sudan, has been hard hit by recent flooding with over 201,000 people impacted. The flooding has resulted in destruction of homes and farmland in Jonglei and other areas of South Sudan. Loss of farmland is devastating in a region that has long suffered from severe hunger and malnutrition.

Access to the flooded areas remains a significant challenge according to a United Nations report. Roads are poor in the area making it more difficult to move supplies.

Jonglei is not only suffering from floods but also continuing fighting between South Sudan’s army and a rebel group in Pibor County’s Likuangole town. The UN reports that fighting is also taking place in nearby Gumuruk town. In Pibor town people are fleeing as they anticipate the violence spreading.

The UN also reports that humanitarian aid groups are not able to access those in need in Likuangole and Gumuruk because of insecurity. Around 90,000 people cannot receive medical care.

South Sudan has been plagued by internal violence, particularly in Jonglei as rival tribes have continually launched attacks against each other. The government launched a disarmament program earlier this year to try and quell the violence.

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan says its “particularly concerned by the apparent emergence in Jonglei of an armed insurgency group linked to the militia leader David Yau Yau, which is believed to be acting in concert with groups of armed youths who have evaded the civilian disarmament operation in the state.”

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