News, Politics

Misseriya militia kills 27 in Abyei region

People gather around a house burnt by Misseriya gunmen in Komol of Abyei area on 22 January 2020 (ST photo

By Ngor Deng Matem

Twenty-seven people have reportedly been killed in Western part of Abyei region and four others sustained injuries after an attack by armed Misseriya. 

According to Abyei authorities, the attackers were suspected armed men from Misseriya backed-up by the Sudanese armed forces-SAF.

The spokesperson for Abyei administration Hon. Ajak Deng Miyen said the attack happened on Sunday evening at Mading Thon and Kol Bol areas.

“A huge number of Misseriya militia and SAF launched an attack from two directions with the intention to enter Abyei town but the attackers were bravely repulsed back by the Abyei youth. This was a really tragic day in the history of the Abyei community,” Hon. Miyen described.

Miyen called on the United Nations Interim Security force for Abyei-UNISFA to revisit its mandated responsibilities of protecting the civilians in Abyei Territories.

“We are calling on the UNISFA to live up to its responsibilities and render effective protection to civilians,” Miyen stressed.

As a result of the Sunday attack, some people fled the area and Nyok Arop Deng is among the IDPs. “We ran to the UNISFA compound but they refused to let us in, saying that approval had to be made in New York UN headquarters. This posed us at risk and therefore many proceeded towards Twic County for safety,” Nyok explained.

Another resident, Ayom Deng Biong told this newspaper that, “I better go to Aweil because I escaped the death in Aneet in February this year which forced me to Abyei town but violence in Abyei, so I better migrate to Aweil until the Abyei issue is defined”.

Last week, armed youths from Twic and Abyei clashed over the land dispute in Aneet. This conflict started on the 10th of February where some members of two communities fought, leaving many lives lost from both sides.

In late February, the South Sudan President formed a committee to investigate the root cause of the Abyei and Twic conflict. The committee is headed by the Vice President Hussein Abdelbagi and many other senior government officials from Cabinet and Legislature.

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