From JAJI BASHIR in Khartoum, Sudan
KHARTOUM, (CAJ News) – SOUTH Sudan, the world’s youngest country, is on the brink of a catastrophe similar to the genocide in Rwanda where 1 million people were killed in the 1990s.
This is according to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights at the end of a ten-day visit yesterday (Thursday).
“The stage is being set for a repeat of what happened in Rwanda and the international community is under an obligation to prevent it,” said chairperson of the commission, Yasmin Sooka.
The genocide in Rwanda is among the worst forms of ethnic cleansing in history.
In South Sudan, Sooka cited indicators such as increasing hate speech, crackdown on media and civil society, deepening divisions between the country’s 64 tribes, renewed recruitment in a country already awash with guns and proliferation of armed groups aligned to both sides engaged conflict.
There is already steady process of ethnic cleansing underway in several areas of South Sudan using starvation, gang rape and the burning of villages, Sooka said.
“The scale of rape of women and girls perpetrated by all armed groups in South Sudan is utterly unacceptable and frankly mind boggling,” said Sooka.
She urged the international community to act, “not just produce more reports.”
The commission recommended the immediate deployment of the 4 000-strong Regional Protection Force, freezing of assets, targeted sanctions and implementing an arms embargo.
South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in 2011. Some 300 000 people have been killed and 3 million people have been displaced in a country of 12 million.
– CAJ NEWS