Unexploded ordnance blasts, 10 dead in Jur River

By Ephraim Modi D.S

An unexploded ordnance that blasted in Jebel-Mille area of Jur River County in Western Bahr El Ghazal State, on Thursday afternoon left ten people dead including children and injured two other children.

The Commissioner of Jur River County, James Bak confirmed the incident to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper on phone yesterday.

He said the explosion occurred when a group of twelve people were collecting mangoes along the roadside.

“There were about 7 women and 3 boys looking for mangoes on the road (side) and a young boy (was) looking at it (bomb), then he dropped it and picked it, the whole women were looking at the bullet (bomb),” commissioner Bak narrated the incident.

He further reported that a child of 5 months and 7 years old boy were severely wounded and are currently under medical attention in Wau state Hospital.

The Commissioner presumed that the bomb was planted by the Sudanese armed forces longtime ago during the conflict with SPLA around their controlled areas.

Meanwhile, Linda Tom, spokesperson for UN mission in South Sudan told Radio Miraya, that “we received the tragic news that an unexploded ordnance incident had occurred in a remote village, a few hours drive from Wau”, in Western Bahr el-Ghazal state adding that 11 children were killed and another was injured.

“The scale of this tragedy is immense, we send our most sincere condolences to the families of the victims,” she continued.

According to the international committee of the Red Cross.(ICRC) “Each year, very many civilians are killed or injured by unexploded ordnances, such as artillery shells or mortars, grenades, bombs or rockets, left behind after an armed conflict.”

In June 2022, the United Nations Office for Refugees confirmed that experts from the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) had destroyed more than one million explosive devices in South Sudan, including “40,121 mines, 76,879 cluster bombs and 974,968 other unexploded devices”.

The United Nations began demining what was then known as Southern Sudan a decade ago.

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