News / Africa

Refugee Crisis in South Sudan

Refugee camp in the Village of Doro in Maban County in South Sudan's Upper Nile State.
Refugee camp in the Village of Doro in Maban County in South Sudan's Upper Nile State.
Joe DeCapua

The medical aid group Doctors Without Borders is reporting a refugee crisis in South Sudan’s Upper Nile State. It says 60 thousand people have fled fighting just across the border in Sudan.

The group, also known as MSF, says more than 30,000 of the refugees are in a camp in the village of Doro in Upper Nile State. That’s about 50 kilometers or so from the border. The rest are in Il Fug, which is just four kilometers from the border. They escaped fighting between government forces and the rebel SPLA North.

Bad and getting worse

“The influx is not stopping. Every day, we see people arriving on camels, by foot, on donkey carts, by trucks. Whatever they have. They arrive every day, with some peaks up to more than 1,000 per day,” said Jean Pierre Amigo, MSF field coordinator in Maban County, who spoke by satellite phone about the situation.

While humanitarian access to Doro is relatively easy, that’s not the case for Il Fug.

“The road is very, very bad. That’s the major problem. And then it’s also a question of security as it is not normal to have such a concentration of refugees so near to the border. And the proximity of the border may give risks to them,” he said.

An MSF medical team recently spent three days in Il Fug and conducted 700 examinations.

“We found more than 400 children with malnutrition. In these 400 children, more than 100 were severely malnourished. And such figures are really alarming and clearly show that we are in a real emergency,” said Amigo.

Medical teams also found numerous cases of malaria and diarrhea and respiratory and eye infections. In addition, many of the refugees have chronic health problems, indicating they did not have access to health care in Blue Nile State.

What’s more, drinking water is so scarce in Il Fug that Doctors Without Borders is setting up a water treatment unit there. Drinking water is also in short supply in Doro.

Immediate evacuations needed

Amigo said among those treated in Il Fug was a woman who had been shot five times in the back, as well as in her right arm and fingers. He says she is about 70 years old and was unable to escape when ground forces attacked her village. Her family also reported planes bombing the area.

“The priority is to use trucks to relocate by trucks the 20,000 refugees in Il Fug more in the south. And this process must not start tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, but right now,” he said.

MSF said in some cases, the Sudanese refugees walked for weeks to reach safety in South Sudan.

You May Like

Photogallery Kyiv: Russian Forces Tightening Grip on East

And new United Nations report documents human rights abuses committed by both sides in conflict More

Locust Swarms Fill Antananarivo Skies

FAO-led control efforts halted plague More

South Africa’s Plan to Move Rhinos May Not Stop Poaching

Experts say international coordination needed to follow the money trail and bring down rhino horn kingpins More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Weeki
X
August 29, 2014 2:18 AM
The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid