Disputed Sudan-South Sudan border sees at least 43 dead, 27 injured in renewed attacks
At least 42 people have been killed, and 27 injured in a series of attacks on the disputed Sudan-South Sudan border area of Abyei yesterday. Abyei’s Security Advisor, Kiluk Kon, told Radio Dabanga’s Voice of the States programme: “the attack on Ameit market amounted to 27 dead and 26 injured, the attack in Nong amounted to seven dead, the area of Lu witnessed five deaths and one injured, while the area of Kolom witnessed four deaths”.
According to Kon, the attackers wore the uniform of the Sudanese Armed Forces and were riding four-wheel drive vehicles and motorcycles. The attackers also stole nearly 2,000 heads of cattle in Lu, however nearly 200 heads of cattle had been recovered by the following morning.
He called on the United Nations to hold the Sudanese government accountable for the ongoing violence in Abyei. Recently, on March 6, armed herdsmen killed at least 42 people and left four injured. The region also saw three armed attacks against the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) patrols.
Abyei, an area at the Sudan-South Sudan border, is the traditional homeland of the Dinka Ngok, a clan of the large Dinka tribe in South Sudan. Herders of the Misseriya, a northern Arab tribe, traverse Abyei and other Sudan-South Sudan border areas with their cattle in search of water and pasture in the dry season and to trade goods. The region witnesses many cases of cattle rustling, abductions, and other robberies.
Since the secession of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011, both countries claim the oil-rich region of Abyei. In the same year, the UN Security Council decided on the establishment of UNISFA, to monitor and verify the redeployment of armed forces from Abyei.
UNISFA also has a mandate to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence, to protect the area from incursions by unauthorized elements, and ensure security.
On May 1 last year, Radio Dabanga reported that the UN Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations requested that the Security Council consider a six-month rollover of the UNISFA mandate, citing the volatile security situation.
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