UNICEF statement on abducted women and children in Pibor
Juba, South Sudan - UNICEF condemns the recent abductions of women and children, rape, sexual violence, physical beatings and gross deprivations inflicted upon upwards of 65 people (16 women and 49 children) in the Pibor Administrative Area in South Sudan. There can be no justification, not in past atrocities, not in any culture, nor in any law, for this violence against already vulnerable people.
The abduction of children has severe consequences on the physical and psychosocial wellbeing of children, their families, and communities, with almost certain long-term consequences.
UNICEF commends the work of the Greater Pibor Administrative Authority and Jonglei Administration in securing the release of abducted women and children, as well as the urgency shown to return the children to Pibor safely.
UNICEF further commends child protection partners and social workers, acting in collaboration with the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare, to ensure rapid family tracing and reunification processes are initiated for the affected families. This is the first step in what will most likely be a long journey of reintegration and healing.
UNICEF is committed to strengthening responses to child protection violations through effective case management, family reunification, psychosocial support and trauma response programmes.
UNICEF calls on all parties in South Sudan to adhere to the Convention of the Rights of the Child and ensure children’s safety and security are assured at all times.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work in South Sudan visit: www.unicef.org/southsudan