The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has deployed its peacekeeping troops to Aburoc in the Upper Nile region to enable delivery of the much-needed humanitarian assistance, like reported by sudantribune.com.
“The aim is to provide humanitarian groups with the confidence they need to resume the provision of urgent assistance to tens of thousands of people in Aburoc who are fleeing the ongoing violence,” said UNMISS head, David Shearer.
“This short-term deployment is a response to an immediate need and will provide a light and temporary peacekeeping footprint in the area,” he added.
Currently, the U.N says, up to 50,000 people are sheltering in and around the town of Aburoc on the west bank of the River Nile after a series of clashes between government and the opposition forces.
The most urgent humanitarian need is to provide safe drinking water, it added.
“Without a secure supply of clean water, there is a risk of an outbreak of diarrhoea.or even cholera which has the potential to kill thousands of vulnerable people. It is vital that our humanitarian partners are able to get this water and other aid through to alleviate the suffering,” said Shearer.
“I also note that the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) has acknowledged UNMISS’ intention to help facilitate the provision of humanitarian assistance to the people of the Upper Nile,” he added.
The peacekeeping troops’ immediate focus will be on securing the roads to provide safe passage for the delivery and collection of water and other assistance by humanitarian groups, the world body stressed in its statement.
Concerns have been raised on risks of old landmines on the road between Kodok and Auburoc as the U.N Mine Action Service is reportedly assessing the situation and will remove any unexploded ordnance to reduce threat and enable people move freely.