Addis Ababa, April 18, 2022(Walta) – The UN’s envoy to South Sudan warned on Thursday that almost nine million people will be in need of aid this year as the fragile country grapples with a surge in violence between armed factions and a food crisis.
Clashes have flared anew in the world’s youngest nation despite a pledge by President Salva Kiir and his rival, Vice President Riek Machar, to silence their guns and strive toward implementing key provisions of a 2018 peace pact.
Nicholas Haysom, the head of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), called on the leaders to step up efforts to quell the violence and urged the international community to channel more assistance.
“This year two-thirds of the population or almost nine million people — 4.6 million of which are children — will need aid to survive,” Haysom told reporters in the capital Juba.
“Food insecurity will be widespread. And that is worsening because of climate change, conflict, and displacement.”
Haysom said he was “discouraged by the resurgence of sub-national violence,” highlighting the plight of thousands of people driven from their homes by fighting that erupted last week between pro-Kiir and pro-Machar forces in oil-rich Unity State, according to SBS.
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