News / Africa

South Sudan Peace Protesters Rail Against UN

  • Demonstrators at a peace rally in Juba on Monday, March 10, 2014, carried anti-UN signs.
  • South Sudan Vice President James Wani Igga addresses demonstrators at a peace rally in Juba on Monday, March 10, 2014.
  • A woman holds up a hand-written sign at a government organized peace demonstration in Juba on March 10, 2014.
  • Protesters march down a street in Juba on Monday, March 10, 2014 during a peace rally organized by the government.
  • A protester holds up an sign against UNMISS head Hilde Johnson at a peace rally in Juba.
South Sudan Demonstrators Rail Against UN
Mugume Davis Rwakaringi
Thousands of young people in South Sudan took part in rallies organized by the government Monday, calling for peace in the young country and accusing the United Nations of colluding with anti-government forces.

As a police band led hundreds of demonstrators through the streets of Juba, 22-year-old Lemi Samuel said he had come to the rally to show his support for President Salva Kiir.

“Coming here means we want to show the world that there is no president who is elected democratically that can be withdrawn just like that," Samuel told VOA.

Vice President James Wani Igga told the crowd that South Sudan has rejected calls made at peace talks in Addis Ababa for Kiir to step down and the government to be dissolved, and for South Sudan to come under U.N. protection.

“This is just nonsense that we rejected," he said.

"The other suggestion was even worse, which is to consider South Sudan as a U.N. protectorate. They want us to become a U.N. colony.... If they want to force us to be colonized again, I swear to God even an old man like me will return to the bush as a rebel,” he said.

Some of demonstrators carried signs accusing the U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) of arming anti-government forces.
A protester at a rally in Juba on March 10, 2014, holds up a sign against UNMISS head Hilde Johnson.A protester at a rally in Juba on March 10, 2014, holds up a sign against UNMISS head Hilde Johnson.
x
A protester at a rally in Juba on March 10, 2014, holds up a sign against UNMISS head Hilde Johnson.
A protester at a rally in Juba on March 10, 2014, holds up a sign against UNMISS head Hilde Johnson.

The accusations came after South Sudanese officials last week intercepted a U.N. convoy carrying weapons by road from Juba to Bentiu, in violation of a U.N. rule that stipulates arms should be transported by air only in the country for security reasons.

The weapons were in a shipment of "general goods" in which "several containers were wrongly labeled and inadvertently contained weapons and ammunition. This is regrettable," UNMISS said in a statement, apologizing for the mistake.

At another rally In Wau, in Western Bahr el Ghazal, economics student Mawien Ayom led demonstrators as they marched from the university to the U.N. compound to hand over a letter protesting the U.N. presence in South Sudan.

Awien accused UNMISS of helping to plan the events of Dec. 15 in Juba, which triggered months of violence in South Sudan, and of pushing Kiir's former deputy and now arch-rival Riek Machar to rise up against him.

"There is no doubt that UNMISS has changed from its mandate as a peacekeeping mission in South Sudan to a war-and-worse instigating mission in South Sudan,” he said.

UN Sector Coordinator Winny Babahuga accepted the letter on behalf of UNMISS and told the crowd that their memorandum would be sent to U.N. headquarters in New York, where it would be seen by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

A spokesman for Ban, Stephane Dujarric, said late Monday a delegation from U.N. headquarters will travel to South Sudan this week to join government and UNMISS officials in Rumbek, where the weapons were discovered, to conduct a probe into the "circumstances behind this incident."

"In the meantime, the Mission says that it is important to wait for the facts to come out and respect all provisions of the Status of Forces Agreement signed between the UN and the Government of South Sudan," Dujarric said.

Michael Atit contributed to this story from Wau, Margaret Besheer contributed from New York

You May Like

Australia-Cambodia Resettlement Agreement Raises Concerns

Agreement calls for Cambodia to accept refugees in return for $35 million in aid and reflects Australia’s harder line approach towards asylum seekers and refugees More

India Looks to Become Arms Supplier Instead of Buyer

US hopes India can become alternative to China for countries looking to buy weapons, but experts question growth potential of Indian arms industry More

Earth Day Concert, Rally Draws Thousands in Washington

President Obama also took up the issue Saturday in his weekly address, saying there 'no greater threat to our planet than climate change' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: mambo from: juba
March 14, 2014 3:15 PM
South sudan is not a failed state to be controlled by un they are attracted with our resourses and claiming to control us

by: Malcolm Hume
March 12, 2014 4:40 AM
If it wasn't for the UN, the S. Sudanese would be roasting on the end of a stick.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Are Energy Needs Putting Thailand's Natural Beauty at Risk?i
X
Steve Sandford
April 17, 2015 12:50 AM
Thailand's appetite for more electricity has led to the construction of new dams along the Mekong River to the north and new coal plants near the country's famous beaches in the south. A proposed coal plant in a so-called "green zone" has touched off a debate. VOA's Steve Sandford reports.
Video

Video Are Energy Needs Putting Thailand's Natural Beauty at Risk?

Thailand's appetite for more electricity has led to the construction of new dams along the Mekong River to the north and new coal plants near the country's famous beaches in the south. A proposed coal plant in a so-called "green zone" has touched off a debate. VOA's Steve Sandford reports.
Video

Video Overwhelmed by Migrants, Italy Mulls Military Action to Stabilize Libya

Thousands more migrants have arrived on the southern shores of Italy from North Africa in the past two days. Authorities say they expect the total number of arrivals this year to far exceed previous levels, and the government has said military action in Libya might be necessary to stem the flow. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Putin Accuses Kyiv of ‘Cutting Off’ Eastern Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin, in his annual televised call-in program, again denied there were any Russian troops fighting in Ukraine. He also said the West was trying to ‘contain’ Russia with sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports on reactions to the president’s four-hour TV appearance.
Video

Video Eye Contact Secures Dog's Place in Human Heart

Dogs serve in the military, work with police and assist the disabled, and have been by our side for thousands of years serving as companions and loyal friends. We love them. They love us in return. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports on a new study that looks at the bio-chemical bond that cements that human-canine connection.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Search for Bodies of Missing Soldiers

As the cease-fire becomes more fragile in eastern Ukraine, a team of volunteer body collectors travels to the small village of Savur Mohyla in the what pro-Russian separatists call the Donetsk Peoples Republic - to retrieve bodies of fallen Ukrainian servicemen from rebel-held territories. Adam Bailes traveled with the team and has this report.
Video

Video Xenophobic Violence Sweeps South Africa

South Africa, long a haven for African immigrants, has been experiencing the worst xenophobic violence in years, with at least five people killed and hundreds displaced in recent weeks. From Johannesburg, VOA’s Anita Powell brings us this report.
Video

Video Sierra Leone President Koroma Bemoans Ebola Impact on Economy

In an interview with VOA's Shaka Ssali on Wednesday, President Ernest Koroma said the outbreak undermined his government’s efforts to boost and restructure the economy after years of civil war.
Video

Video Protester Lands Gyrocopter on Capitol Lawn

A 61-year-old mailman from Florida landed a small aircraft on the Capitol lawn in Washington to bring attention to campaign finance reform and what he says is government corruption. Wednesday's incident was one in a string of security breaches on U.S. government property. Zlatica Hoke reports the gyrocopter landing violated a no-fly zone.
Video

Video Apollo 13, NASA's 'Successful Failure,' Remembered

The Apollo 13 mission in 1970 was supposed to be NASA's third manned trip to the moon, but it became much more. On the flight's 45th anniversary, astronauts and flight directors gathered at Chicago's Adler Planetarium to talk about how the aborted mission changed manned spaceflight and continues to influence space exploration today. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video Badly Burned Ukrainian Boy Bravely Fights Back

A 9-year-old Ukrainian boy has returned to his native country after intensive treatment in the United States for life-threatening burns. Volodia Bubela, burned in a house fire almost a year ago, battled back at a Boston hospital, impressing doctors with his bravery. Faith Lapidus narrates this report from VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko.
Video

Video US Maternity Leave Benefits Much Less Than Many Countries

It was almost 20 years ago that representatives of 189 countries met at a UN conference in Beijing and adopted a plan of action to achieve gender equality around the world. Now, two decades later, the University of California Los Angeles World Policy Analysis Center has issued a report examining what the Beijing Platform for Action has achieved. From Los Angeles, Elizabeth Lee has more.
Video

Video Endangered Hawaiian Birds Get Second Chance

Of the world's nearly 9,900 bird species, 13 percent are threatened with extinction, according to BirdLife International. Among them are two Hawaiian honeycreepers - tiny birds that live in the forest canopy, and, as the name implies, survive on nectar from tropical flowers. Scientists at the San Diego Zoo report they have managed to hatch half a dozen of their chicks in captivity, raising hopes that the birds will flutter back from the brink of extinction. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Exhibit Brings Renaissance Master Out of the Shadows

The National Gallery of Art in Washington has raised the curtain on one of the most intriguing painters of the High Renaissance. Mostly ignored after his death in the early 1500s, Italian master Piero di Cosimo is now claiming his place alongside the best-known artists of the period. VOA’s Ardita Dunellari reports.
Video

Video Sidemen to Famous Blues Artists Record Their Own CD

Legendary blues singer BB King was briefly hospitalized last week and the 87-year-old “King of the Blues” may not be touring much anymore. But some of the musicians who have played with him and other blues legends have now released their own CD in an attempt to pass the torch to younger fans... and put their own talents out front as well. VOA’s Greg Flakus has followed this project over the past year and filed this report from Houston.
Video

Video Iran-Saudi Rivalry Is Stoking Conflict in Yemen

Iran has proposed a peace plan to end the conflict in Yemen, but the idea has received little support from regional rivals like Saudi Arabia. They accuse Tehran of backing the Houthi rebels, who have forced Yemen’s president to flee to Riyadh, and have taken over swaths of Yemen. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA, analysts say the conflict is being fueled by the Sunni-Shia rivalry between the two regional powers.

VOA Blogs