Over two hundred Nepalese peacekeepers arrive in Juba from the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), to reinforce the military component of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). UN Photo/Isaac Billy
Over two hundred Nepalese peacekeepers arrive in Juba from the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), to reinforce the military component of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). UN Photo/Isaac Billy

A UN human rights official has said lack of accountability for crimes perpetrated during the violence in Wau town in South Sudan’s northwest region remains one of the country’s “biggest challenges.”

Eugene Nindorera, Human Rights Director of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) said Sunday no arrest or detention has been made in connection with the recent killings in the country’s second largest town of Wau.”I can confirm that, as of Sunday, nobody is being detained in connection with this attack against civilians,” said Nindorera in a statement.”I talked to victims and witnesses and was shaken to hear their testimonies of how they had to flee their houses after being attacked. It’s more important than ever before that people are held accountable for the crimes they have committed,” he added.

Nindorera was speaking at the end of five-day visit to Wau, where violence earlier in April led to the death of 19 government SPLA soldiers and at least 28 civilians.The killing of civilians in Wau town followed the ambush and killing of the SPLA soldiers by suspected SPLA-In Opposition fighters.

The Human Rights Division of UNMISS has interviewed 43 individuals, including eight women and two children, from April 11, to collect information about alleged human rights violations perpetrated by government forces and aligned armed groups in Wau town on April 10.Wau State authorities have established a committee to produce a comprehensive report to determine the motive for the attacks and identify the perpetrators in order to hold them accountable.

Indications are that the civilian population is also fleeing, though the number of people displaced has been unable to be verified due to the highly fluid situation.But UNMISS has confirmed that by Thursday the protection of civilians site adjacent to the UNMISS base in Wau had registered some 17,000 new arrivals, mainly women and children, while around 5,000 people had sought sanctuary inside the compound of the Wau Catholic Church.The influx of newly displaced people has led to over-crowding and pressure on humanitarian services, the UN said.

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh