At least 20 killed over girl in South Sudan’s Lakes State
At least 20 civilians were killed and several others wounded on Thursday in clashes over elopement in Annuol Payam of Yirol West in Lakes State of South Sudan, according to state official.
“The number of people killed from both sides have increased from 13 to 20 based on the final report after the security forces took over the area where clashes occured,” said Lakes Sate Caretaker Minister of Information, William Kocji Kerjok.
Kocji said the fighting which claimed 20 lives were triggered by a social issue.
“The fighting was over a girl who eloped and the family of that girl went and shot four people killing them on spot (allegedly from the family of the boy who took the girl) and people from the other side also revenged,” Kerjok told Juba Echo reporter in an interview on Friday.
“Almost the whole community of Annuol starting fighting because there were some people wounded or killed in the process who were not even part of the problem, so this triggered everybody to get involved in the fighting and it made the issue to become huge,” he added.
He said calm has now returned to the area after government sent security forces to control the situation.
“The Commissioner of Yirol East went there with more forces for reinforcement, so now the commissioner is on the ground, they made joint operation with commissioner of Rumbek East and they managed to control the situation now,” he disclosed.
Since 2019, South Sudan has been experiencing a surge in communal violence in Jonglei, Warrap and Lakes states mainly due to cattle raiding, child abduction and revenge killings according to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan.