Written by Rebecca Oldham. Media by Andrea Martin. [divide]
Sudan has been in turmoil since South Sudan seceded in 2011, making South Sudan the youngest nation in our world today. In 2013, however, the violence and turmoil resurfaced to an all-time high when South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, accused Riek Machar, his ex-vice president, of trying to form a coup to take over the government. This has led to an all-out civil war that has been growing since 2013.
According to the United Nations, it has been estimated that around 2.2 million people have been displaced since the beginning of the civil war in 2013. An article by BBC stated that one in five South Sudanese has been displaced due to the conflict. This has caused an influx of migrants trying to escape the conflict in Sudan, which has also resulted in migrants also leaving other Middle Eastern countries. Both situations have placed pressure upon European countries to deal with the growing number of migrants from both Sudan and Middle Eastern countries.
In December of 2013, the violence had grown to an all-time high; civilian’s rights were being taken away from the South Sudanese, so the African Union put in place an inquiry to investigate human rights abuses within South Sudan. The information gathered was released last Tuesday.
The violence has caused terror and fear throughout South Sudan as civilians who aren’t involved with any of the fighting are being brutally attacked. There have also been a lot of reports of crimes against women’s human rights. Women are beaten, brutally raped or gang raped, and then left bleeding on the verge of death. Crimes against different tribes have been committed as fighting ensues in certain areas where there have been reports of mass graves consisting of the bodies of those who have been attacked. Some attacks involve innocent people being tied up and set on fire. Those who have been beaten are compelled to commit suicide by jumping into fires. Even those who survive the brutal attacks are nearly unrecognizable, as their bodies have been manipulated.
Some of the most terrifying stories are heard after tribes are attacked. A lot of the reports have shown that after they are attacked they are forced to do things to their own tribe members. Some reports say that the attackers will drain certain tribe member’s blood and force the others to drink it before they are attacked or killed themselves. Other reports say some attackers have tied up tribe members and burned them to death in front of the still living tribe members. They will then force the tribe members into cannibalism by making them eat the pieces of burnt flesh from their dead tribe members. Tribes are usually very close-knit communities so these people are being forced to attack and kill their family members and neighbors as well as drink their blood and eat their flesh.
The intense violence of these actions makes you wonder what action the African Union has taken to control and stop the people responsible for these brutal attacks on the civilians of South Sudan.