Juba (Agenzia Fides) - An Anglican Bishop has accused the South Sudan army (SPLA) of mass rapes and violence against civilians in the state of Eastern Equatoria. "We do not know the exact number of women who were raped but we have five women and girls here in Juba Teaching Hospital", said Paul Yugusuk, of the Anglican Diocese of Lomega.
According to the cleric, testimonies given by the victims pinned government soldiers stationed in Nesitu, a military outpost south of Juba that provides protection for vehicles traveling from Juba to Nimule, a South Sudanese town bordering Uganda.
Soldiers carried out massive sexual assaults on women in Kubi village, on Juba-Nimule road. 46 young men have been arrested and tortured. "42 of the men have been released but four are still missing", says the Bishop. The village was also looted and the entire population had fled.
The UN and the Christian churches in South Sudan are increasing the alarm regarding the growing violence on ethnic and tribal basis that characterize the civil war between the government of President Salva Kiir and forces loyal to former Vice President Riek Machar. A senior official of SPLA has recently resigned accusing Kiir of ethnic cleansing against those who do not belong to his ethnic group, the Dinka (see Fides 14/02/2017). (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 15/02/2017)