The UN has asked the government of South Sudan to bring to justice those responsible for an attack in February against a United Nations managed IDP camp in Malakal, capital of the north east oil state, Upper Nile.
In an investigation report sent to the UN Security Council, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon demanded that “the transitional government of national unity hold accountable all those responsible including political and military leaders of Upper Nile State.”
According to the findings of the investigation conducted on site by a UN team in May, some of the attackers entered the camp on February 17 and 18 wearing uniforms of the South Sudanese army (SPLA).
“They used sophisticated weapons, tracer bullets and grenades in the attack which left at least 30 dead and 123 wounded,” it said adding that they “systematically attacked the camps of the Nuer and Shilluk ethnic groups while the areas inhabited by the Dinka and Darfuri communities were spared”.
In addition, 4,000 members of the spared communities were evacuated aboard trucks to camps with the help of government soldiers.
“Since the government army was the only armed force controlling the town of Malakal, it is difficult to exempt local commanders of the army and pro-government militias from any involvement in this incident,” said the UN.
The UN also asked the President and the Vice President of South Sudan to broadcast a televised message condemning any form of attack against civilians, especially in sites protected by UN peacekeepers.
They added that the government must maintain the Malakal camp “at least in the short term, until the security and political situation is improved and give the UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) means to improve its capacity to protect civilians.”
In a letter accompanying the report, Ki-moon said he has forwarded the findings to the South Sudanese President Salva Kiir.