‘No-one predicted such a catastrophe’ in S Sudan


Following the UN report on the horrific abuses committed in South Sudan’s conflict, including civilians having had their eyes gouged out, their throats slit or having been castrated, BBC World Service Africa editor Will Ross writes:

South Sudan only gained its independence seven years ago and despite the celebrations there were warnings that the road ahead would be tough – years of conflict against the Arab dominated Khartoum government had had a devastating impact.

But no-one predicted the catastrophe that has since engulfed the country.

Within two years President Salva Kiir had fallen out with his deputy Riek Machar.

That triggered the civil war which has now forced two million people to flee the country as refugees and has left another two million displaced within South Sudan.

Instead of committing to peace deals, the political leaders have torn the country apart in their effort to win the war.

Now, a team of UN human rights investigators has recommended 40 senior military officials in South Sudan should go on trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

It says setting up a special court to try those responsible for the atrocities is the only way to stop what it calls the rampant devastation of millions of lives by South Sudan’s leaders.


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