Children killed, abducted and raped in South Sudan attacks – UNICEF

UNICEF Press Centre

JUBA, South Sudan/NAIROBI, Kenya, 

This handout picture taken on April 15, 2014 and released on April 23 by the the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) shows debris outside the Kali-Ballee Mosque in the oil town of Bentiu, Unity State, on April 15, 2014. "More than 200 civilians were reportedly killed and over 400 wounded," the UN mission in the country said, adding there were also massacres at a church, hospital and an abandoned UN World Food Programme (WFP) compound. South Sudan's army has been fighting rebels loyal to sacked vice president Riek Machar, who launched a renewed offensive this month targeting key oil fields.  AFP PHOTO / HO / UNMISS RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / HO / UNMISS " - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS-/AFP/Getty Images

This handout picture taken on April 15, 2014 and released on April 23 by the the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS): South Sudan’s government as witnessed by credible sources have committed attrocities, raps, massacres, abduction of children and raid of cattles. (AFP PHOTO  “AFP PHOTO / HO / UNMISS “)

May 18, 2015 (Nyamilepedai) -– Dozens of children have been killed, at least 12 raped and others abducted and recruited in a series of attacks in South Sudan’s Unity State over a two-week period, according to eyewitness accounts received by UNICEF.

According to dozens of testimonies from people who have fled burning villages, children have been both the victims and perpetrators of recent violence in Unity State, with armed men and boys in military and civilian clothing responsible for the widespread destruction of life and property. Witnesses reported that they believed the attacks were undertaken by armed groups aligned with the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA).

Survivors reported to UNICEF staff that whole villages were burned to the ground by armed groups, while large numbers of girls and women were taken outside to be raped and killed – including children as young as seven. At least 19 boys – some as young as 10 years of age – and seven girls were killed. Others were mutilated or recruited to join the fighting and take care of stolen cattle.

UNICEF Representative in South Sudan, Jonathan Veitch said that multiple witness reports are building a chilling picture of the ordeal children are suffering as fighting intensifies ahead of the rainy season.

“The deliberate targeting of children in these attacks is an outrage,” said Veitch. “If children are to be protected from further harm, an immediate cessation of hostilities is urgently needed, together with full access for humanitarian workers. An urgent and thorough investigation is also required to identify and hold accountable those responsible for these latest atrocities against children.”

The Government of South Sudan and forces opposed to Government should use all influence to protect children, to immediately stop grave violations against children, including sexual violence, and to release all children from armed forces and associated groups, said UNICEF.

An estimated 13,000 children have been recruited and are being used by all sides of the conflict, according to data verified by the UN.

The majority of those who survived the recent attacks in South Sudan are women and small children. UNICEF and partners are providing psychosocial support to survivors and registering separated and unaccompanied children for family reunification.

Fighting has been escalating in Unity and Upper Nile states in recent weeks, with violations against children occurring with frightening regularity.

UNICEF says unconditional access for the UN is now critical to areas in Unity and Upper Nile States affected by recent violence so as to provide support and protection to women and children and to all civilians who may be injured, trapped or in hiding.

For further information, please contact:

Claire McKeever, UNICEF South Sudan, Mobile: + 211 (0) 955 109325,

James Elder, UNICEF Regional Chief of Communication, Eastern & Southern Africa, Mobile:+254 71558 1222,, @1james_elder

Chris Tidey, UNICEF Media New York, +1 917 909 9542,

  5 comments for “Children killed, abducted and raped in South Sudan attacks – UNICEF

  1. May 18, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    This is a cowardice fight, why you attacked children and woman? are they rebel too?


  2. GatNor
    May 18, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    Staggering suffering mostly children. Upper Nile is put at a disadvantage for the next few decades.


    • Goikuach
      May 18, 2015 at 11:04 pm

      Because of Nuer stupidity. You put your families at risk of atrocities because of one selfish and stupid nyagat Riek Machar Teny presidential ambition. Face it idiots and stop wwhining.


  3. GatNor
    May 19, 2015 at 5:13 am


    This is exactly what you are good at, blaming every problem on others.

    The fact that you lost touch with humanity is to be blame on Nuers too right?

    Just tell me one problem you don’t blame Nuers for.

    Every problem on this planet including that of South Sudan is cause by Nuers.

    The kingdom is crumbling due miscalculation & ofcourse blame that on the Nuers too.


  4. May 19, 2015 at 11:02 pm

    yesterday good day to SPLA IO in Apper nile Stae and also what is happhen jo.nglei yesterday.Got that too lat yesterday evening


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