JUBA, South Sudan

At least 33 people were killed, including four children, in an attack over the weekend on a village in South Sudan’s Jonglei state. 

Matuor Mabior, secretary general of the Bor Community Youth Association, confirmed Monday to Anadolu Agency that armed youth from the neighboring Pibor Administrative Area attacked Baidit Payam in the afternoon, also leaving scores injured.

Mabior said the attackers also took off with an undisclosed number of cattle.

“The number of cattle raided is not yet confirmed, but the death toll according to the information we have gathered is 33,” he said.

He disclosed that the situation remains tense, urging the state government to intervene.

“The security situation is still tense because people are still afraid of another attack, since it is not the first time that armed youth have attacked Bor County.

“There are no security personnel that have been sent to the area. The people who have been attacked are the ones protecting themselves,” he added.

Bor South County Commissioner Yuot Alier also confirmed the incident, saying that around 20 other people were wounded in Sunday’s attack and some homes were burned.

Alier said 33 people were shot dead and three children were drowned while people tried to hide.

He said the attackers left with hundreds of cattle. Two of the attackers were reportedly killed.

Tuong Majok, the acting governor of Jonglei state, who is also the state minister of cabinet affairs, condemned the attack and urged South Sudan’s government to intervene to stop the “cowardly attacks” against civilians.

In November last year, nine people were reportedly killed in two separate incidents in Bor town.

Greater Jonglei region authorities have been convening peace and reconciliation conferences to discuss the issues of killings and cattle rustling in their surroundings.

But revenge attacks, cattle raiding and child abduction in some areas persist.

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan said that revenge attacks and cattle-related killings remain the biggest insecurity incidents after political violence subsided in the country following the signing of a revitalized peace agreement.

In January 2021, the communities of Jonglei and Pibor agreed to a number of resolutions at a peace and reconciliation conference in the capital Juba aimed at ending the violence. The latest attack shows that the resolutions are being implemented by both sides.

The peace conference, attended by Vice President James Wani Igga, agreed to compensate the families of those killed or injured during the violence.

It also called for the establishment of local courts to handle cattle-related cases, empowering security forces to execute their duties.

The communities also agreed to carry out disarmament exercises, establish buffer zones to separate warring parties, and the deployment of forces along the roads linking the two areas.

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