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Ceasefire monitor concerned by rise in rape crimes

Author: Amos Guya | Published: Wednesday, August 19, 2020

A group of women activists protest the rising rape cases in Juba on May 15, 2020 | Credit | Courtesy

The ceasefire monitoring body has condemned the increase in the number of cases of gender-based violence across the country.

According to the UN Mission in South Sudan, hundreds of women have suffered extreme cases of sexual violence, including gang-rape and sexual abuse of minors with impunity since 2013.

UNMISS reported that older women and girls have been subjected to rape in parts of Yei River, Upper Nile and former Unity states.

Most of the recent incidents have taken place in the capital, Juba, the seat of the national government.

“The prevalence of the incidents is indeed worrying and places the permanent ceasefire and peace agreement at serious risk,” said Teshome Gemechu, CTSAMVM chairperson during the 17th board meeting in Juba on Tuesday.

Between May and August 2020, women – including older ones – and children have been subjected to rape in Gudele, Jonduru, Luri, Rock City and Lemon Gaba, among other places.

Observers say little has been done by the government to address cases of rape and other sexual gender-based violence in South Sudan.

Gemechu attributed the surge of GBV cases to recent military engagements between government forces and opposition groups.

“CTSAMVM remains concerned about continued incident sexual and gender-based violence,” he added.

In August last year, Chief Justice Chan Reec Madut said plans were underway to establish a special court to handle crimes related to Gender-based Violence in the country.

The South Sudan constitution gives the Chief Justice the powers to issue judicial circulars, warrants of establishment and directives to the Courts necessary for the proper and efficient administration of justice.

However, little or nothing has been established as per the pledges of Chief Justice Madut.

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