The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has promised to join hands with various stakeholdersin supporting those currently taking refugee in UN camps to peacefully return home.
The Foreign Affairs minister, Dr Barnaba Marial Benjamin made the pledge on Monday after talks with a joint committee comprising of Dinka, Nuer and other tribes living in Jebel Dinka, a city suburb. The locally formed committee is engaged in looking for support and advocating for the return of the people currently sheltering in the UN bases to return home. Dr. Benjamin re-echoed government’s earlier calls for Internal Displaced Persons (IDPs) especially living in Juba to return to their homes.
The United Nations estimates that 710,600 people have been displaced inside South Sudan since the conflict began in mid-December. Another 171,000 people have fled to neighbouring countries of Uganda, Kenya, Sudan and Ethiopia. The cities of Juba, Bor Malakal and Bentiu of Central Equatoria, Upper Nile and Unity states respectively were most affected by the violence that followed the failed coup attempt by the former vice President of South Sudan Dr. Riek Machar.
According to Hon. James Aguer a legislator at the National Parliament and the head of the committee, many residents of the areas have not returned since they fled in mid-December last year. Hon. James said they had had discussions with some members of the IDPs in the UN camps, and they agree to return to their respective homes so long as “good security” is availed to them.