SIHMA | Scalabrini Institute For Human Mobility In Africa

South Sudan: a Young Country Divided by Civil War

Published by: Aquilina Mawadza and Sergio Carciotto

Image by Jaroslav Šmahel from Pixabay

“I am South Sudanese by nationality. I was born on the 12th of December 1992 in place called Nasir, near the border with Ethiopia. This place is occupied mostly by Nuer speaking people and personally, I am a Nuer. It all started in December 2015 when there was supposed to be an election. The contest was between Salva Kirr (who was and still is the president) and Dr. Machar (who was the Vice President and is currently the rebels’ leader). Mr. Kirr knew that there was a high chance of Dr. Machar defeating him in the contest since him, (Machar), was more popular. Therefore, Kirr mobilized his Dinka community to take up arms against the Nuer community. He gathered some youths and took them to a place called Luri in the bush for training as militias.  The soldiers then embarked on a killing mission and their target was the Nuer people. This is why I fled my home area of Nasir and sought refuge in one of the United Nations’ camps, from where I managed to get into Kenya. The time between the shooting and when we got to the camp forms the most terrible part of my life. We spent the whole time without food and water despite the fact that we had been injured. We hardly slept and the few hours we did, it was in trees. Life in the camp was more hell. The amount of food we were getting in the camp was too little and we usually survived on one meal a day. There was also the problem of a water shortage. This was due to the high number of people in the camp. The tents in the camp were not enough and we were always congested in the camps. The SPLA tried to attack the camp at one time, but their attack was thwarted by the UN forces guarding the camp.”

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