Widespread Impunity in South Sudan Fuels Crime Rate – Amnesty Int’l

Amnesty International has documented how between June and October last year, local groups aligned with forces affiliated to the army and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-In Opposition attacked civilians in Tambura county, Western Equatoria State.

Speaking at the UN Human Rights Council, Amnesty International thanked the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan for their report, which revealed the alarming scale of grave human rights violations and abuses, flagrant disregard for international humanitarian law by the government and armed actors, and continued failure of the authorities to investigate or prosecute crimes under international law.

Witnesses described to Amnesty International how fighters from both sides summarily killed civilians by shooting them or slitting their throats and looted and burned homes.

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According to the U.N., at least 440 civilians were killed during this fighting between June and September.To date, not one person has been prosecuted for these potential war crimes.

Amnesty Int’l says this is just one example not only of the gravity of crimes that continue to be committed, but the total impunity that continues to fuel and normalise them.

Amnesty International said that the work of the Commission remains critical in the absence of any meaningful efforts to hold perpetrators to account at national level, or progress towards the establishment of the Hybrid Court for South Sudan. It is currently the only independent
mechanism able to safeguard future accountability for crimes under international law.

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The organization concluded its statement by urging the Human Rights Council to renew the mandate of the Commission in full, to allow them to continue their vital work to document these.

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