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2018.03.22 11:43

3344_The situation in Juba

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austraLasia #3344

  

The situation in Juba
JUBA: 5 January 2013 --  The situation in South Sudan, apart from the fact that it has grabbed international attention (the background details can be followed up via most international agencies, so will not be found here) is of concern to the Salesians who have responsibility for that area, and would also be of concern to us in EAO, one additional motivation being that the Salesian Family in Juba has several members from our region working in or around the troubled area or who have worked there in the past.

Following is a brief message from Fr Ferrington, the SDB Delegate for Sudan and South Sudan, under AFE Province:

"Our mission in Gumbo (Juba) is quite safe from these atrocities [he earlier listed details from Eric Reeves' Report about South Sudan entitled,Has South Sudan Passed the Tipping Point (3 Jan., in the SUDAN TRIBUNE]. But we regularly take in the victims affected by these violence and clashes. We had to protect some families of affected tribe from vicious attacks. We tried to send some out of the country with police protection as they were vulnerable to attacks while others were safely accompanied to the UN Compounds. Today we received over 100 families – mostly women and children from Bor area where there were violent clashes involving heavy artilleries. We are struggling to provide some food, clean water, shelter and basic health care as we were not adequately prepared to face this crisis. As of now we are trying to reach out to 4 different groups of IDPs (internally Displaced People) with about 300 to 400 families. The number is increasing and we are keeping our mission premises open to respond to this emergency. God surprises us even amidst this tragedy: a Mother gave birth to a lovely child as soon as she arrived.

Peace talks and humanitarian interventions could alleviate some difficulties and deter situation to plunge into serious crisis. We need divine intervention. We appeal to you all for prayers for an immediate halt to these clashes resulting in a comprehensive Ceasefire. May Jesus the prince of peace touch the hearts of leaders, commanders and politicians to make responsible choices in favour of the suffering people and the good of this new nation."

Writing directly from St Vincent de Paul Parish, Gumbo, in Juba, the Parish Priest, Fr David Tulimelli, says:
"As I am sending these pictures, we hear lots of gunshots and a bit of fear and anxiety
in the hearts of the people. Here are some of the attachments, that we are sending you, if God wills we shall be communicating with u. These are the refugees that came from BOR, MANGALLA, they are taking refugee in Gumbo. Yesterday one mother gave  birth to a child; she reached the place around 6.00 a.m. and around 10.40 she gave birth. Please do support us with your prayers. Prayers can change everything."

In a report a couple of days eartlier he had this to say:

"Yesterday, we went to Mogiri, a center run by Salesians of Don Bosco, under the parish. It's almost 30 kms away from our sdb residence. It was badly affected by the fighting. When we met them in the village, they narrated to us that they were in the forest 5 to 8 days without food, afraid of the bomb sounds and killings. We all of us thought our catechist was killed as there was no information from anyone, but by God's grace, we were happy to see him, he is alive; he says he was in the forest along with some of the neighbors.  Practically, most of the shops and houses were burnt, we were not allowed to take pictures...now, some people are staying in our school premises in Mogiri.  
We had seen dead bodies on the road but not allowed to take pictures, no body is there to bury them, (we wanted to bury them.) Today, when we asked one of the soldier, that we would like to bury them, he told me not to take risk. Officer is not interested in those dead ones. Some of the pictures we have taken inside the our school compound, we had distributed oil, blankets, mats, wheat flower, sugar, rice, beans etc,,, we have 70 to 90 families in Mogiri (apart from military people), absolutely, there are no shops to buy anything. Its so sad to see, how much people are suffering and dying of hunger."