Youths kill 15 in South Sudan in latest clash, official says

The victims include a commissioner of the country’s Pibor region, an official says

Published : 20 March 2024, 09:29 AM
Updated : 20 March 2024, 09:29 AM

Unidentified youths shot dead 15 people in South Sudan's Pibor region, including its commissioner, a senior official said on Wednesday, in the latest flare-up of violence in the country.

Civil war in South Sudan, erupting two years after the country won independence from Sudan and fought largely along ethnic lines between Dinkas and Nuers, caused hundreds of thousands of deaths between 2013 and 2018.

The shooting happened on Tuesday when the commissioner of Boma County in Pibor was returning from a visit to a village.

"The commissioner with his team went to Nyat village and on his return he was ambushed and 15 people were killed including the commissioner," Abraham Kelang, information minister of Greater Pibor Administrative Area, told Reuters.

Kelang said the attackers were suspected to be youths from the region's Anyuak community.

Among the dead were Boma's deputy army commander, government officials and the county commissioner's bodyguards, Kelang said.

Since the 2018 peace deal, routine clashes among a patchwork of armed groups have continued to kill and displace large numbers of civilians.

The Greater Pibor Administrative Area is among those affected.

Inhabited mostly by the Murle ethnic community, Boma County has experienced periodic violence sometimes between the Murle and Anyuak or with the Nuer or the Dinkas from neighbouring Jonglei State.

The violence is also motivated by cattle rustling.