News / Africa

Life Trickles Back in South Sudan's Bor

Traders are again selling goods at a market in Bor, June 18, 2014, as the town trickles back to life. Bor was one of the towns hardest hit by fighting in South Sudan.
Traders are again selling goods at a market in Bor, June 18, 2014, as the town trickles back to life. Bor was one of the towns hardest hit by fighting in South Sudan.
— Nearly 100,000 people who fled Bor at the height of the fighting in South Sudan have returned in recent weeks, trying to rebuild lives in a city that is only a shadow of what it used to be.

“People are returning to their normal ways of living," Abraham Leek Mach, who returned to Bor two months ago, told South Sudan in Focus.

"Some people are just preparing their shops in Marol market ... some are constructing their houses in the town, trying to rebuild what they have lost,” he said.

Kon John Manyang, a student at Bor’s Malek Secondary School, was separated from his parents when the fighting that broke out in Juba in mid-December spread to other parts of the country, including the capital of Jonglei state.

Students like Manyang "don’t have parents to provide us with food," he said, and hoping "the government will let us be in school by providing us food and dormitories ... beds.” 

Bor changed hands between pro- and anti-goverment forces several times during the fighting in South Sudan.

Tens of thousands of people caught in the midst of the clashes fled Bor and headed to Ethiopia or across the White Nile River into Lakes state.
 
Children cautiously disembark from a boat that has carried them across the Nile to a village in Awerial, which has received tens of thousands of people who fled fighting in Bor, Jonglei state.
Children cautiously disembark from a boat that has carried them across the Nile to a village in Awerial, which has received tens of thousands of people who fled fighting in Bor, Jonglei state.
Others sought shelter at the U.N. base in the town, which was attacked in April by an armed mob. Dozens of internally displaced persons sheltering inside the base were killed in the attack, which U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon denounced as a war crime.

Still others were killed in their homes, in churches and in hospitals.

A U.N. official who visited Bor in January said that the town had been levelled in the fighting. The warring sides have swapped blame for destroying Bor.
Civilians fleeing violence seek refuge at the UNMISS compound in Bor, capital of Jonglei state, in South Sudan on Dec. 18, 2013.
Civilians fleeing violence seek refuge at the UNMISS compound in Bor, capital of Jonglei state, in South Sudan on Dec. 18, 2013.


But for the last few months, the town's mayor, Nhial Majak Nhial, says Bor has been peaceful and is undergoing something of a rebirth.

“Bor town has enjoyed stability for the last times three to four months now," Nhial said.

"We have received a huge influx of internally displaced people from Awerial county, Lakes state and other areas. This is a good sign that peace and stability are returning to the town of Bor," he said.

Aid agencies are supporting the returnees, many of whose homes were destroyed in the fighting in Bor, and the town is providing temporary accommodation to some returning residents while they rebuild their homes, Nhial said.
 
John Garang Ayii lost his collection of nearly 300 books when his house was burnt to the ground during the fighting. But, like other residents, he has come back and urged others to do the same.
 
“I am encouraging my fellow citizens of Bor County to come back from wherever they are -- whether in Guol-Yaar or in Uganda or in Kenya -- to come back because there is no security threat as per now," he said.

Authorities say that with the return to the town of around 98,000 people who fled during the fighting, the population of Bor has swelled to around 140,000 people. But that is still only about half the town's pre-conflict population, they say.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment 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.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid