South Sudan: 45 people killed in ethnic attack

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At least 45 people were killed in South Sudan on Wednesday during an ethnic attack in the central Duk County.

Some 60 women and children were also kidnapped and 19 people were injured during the attack. Among those killed were six humanitarian workers, which means 92 aid workers have now been killed in South Sudan since the country’s civil conflict broke out in 2013.

Deadly attack in Duk County

According to witnesses, the attack was carried out by members of the Murle ethnic group. The attack targeted a village belonging to members of the Dinka tribe, burning and looting the homes of residents. The final death toll from the attack could yet rise as the village is in a remote area and authorities say they’re still gathering information about the incident.

One thing confirmed is that six humanitarian workers were killed in the attack and another three were also critically injured. Five health workers and one driver who was delivering material for a hospital were killed in the incident. The injured aid workers were evacuated to the capital Juba where they are receiving treatment.

South Sudan’s ethnic clashes

South Sudan’s population comprises of various ethnic groups and deadly clashes have become increasingly common during the country’s political crisis. Clashes between government troops and rebel fighters have contributed to the country’s food shortage which encourages further conflict between ethnic tribes.

Livestock is often stolen during attacks and territorial disputes are exacerbated by the reduction of farmable land. The Murle and Lour Nuer tribes are largely nomadic cattle herders using the animals for food and stores of wealth, which makes cattle raiding a common motivation.

Featured image: By Ranjit Bhaskar, via Al Jazeera English. – This file comes from the Al Jazeera Creative Commons Repository. More info here.This tag does not indicate the copyright status of the attached work. A normal copyright tag is still required. See Commons:Licensing for more information.DSC01829., CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17499510

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.