Africa-Press – South-Sudan. More than 135,000 people have been displaced from their homes in Leer County following fighting between the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) and the main armed opposition SPLA-IO.
The displaced include children and women who have fled to safety in Muom training center and swampy areas along the River Nile.
Sudan Post spoke to Leer County Director of Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (RRC) Paulino Keah Mawich, who said that the displaced are facing dire conditions, lacking food, medicine, and clean drinking water.
“They are around 135,000 people,” he said. “They have fled to Muom training center and the swampy areas towards the Adok Port which is a bit safer and far from Leer.”
Among those displaced is Gatdiang Gattuor Mead, a catechist who fled to Muom training center.
He told Sudan Post that he and others were forced to leave their homes by fighting between forces of Lt. General Simon Maguek Gai and SPLA-IO forces last week.
“We are lacking services like food, medical, and good water from the area where we have been displaced to. We are now going back to our homes after the fighting stopped a few days ago,” he said.
Fighting erupted in Leer on November 28 after the SSPDF and local allies launched an assault on an SPLA-IO base located at Kaigai village, east of Leer town.
The fighting resulted in the displacement of locals and the killing of around ten soldiers, including a senior SSPDF officer who was killed during a sustained gun battle at a primary school in Leer town.