S Su­danese refugees in Congo dou­ble in Septem­ber

The Star (Kenya) - - News -

The num­ber of South Su­danese refugees reg­is­tered in neigh­bour­ing Demo­cratic Repub­lic of Congo nearly dou­bled last month to reach about 54,000, the UN refugee agency said yes­ter­day, as heavy fight­ing con­tin­ues to rav­age the world’s youngest na­tion. Hun­dreds have been killed in South Su­dan in bat­tles that broke out in July be­tween troops loyal to long-time ri­vals Pres­i­dent Salva Kiir and former Vice Pres­i­dent Riek Machar. Dozens more died in fight­ing last week­end. South Su­dan has now leapfrogged Bu­rundi to be­come the third-largest source of refugees in Congo, af­ter Rwanda and Cen­tral African Repub­lic. The vast cen­tral African na­tion hosts nearly 430,000 refugees reg­is­tered by the UN refugee agency.

The num­ber of reg­is­tered refugees from South Su­dan in­creased from 27,250 at the end of Au­gust to 53,974 at the end of Septem­ber, UNHCR said in a re­port. A UNHCR spokesman said it is un­clear how much of the in­crease was ac­counted for by new ar­rivals as op­posed to regis­tra­tion of ex­ist­ing refugees, but the in­flux of South Su­danese flee­ing the con­flict con­tin­ues to grow.

/REUTERS

A sol­dier in­jured dur­ing last week­end’s fight­ing close to the town of Malakal rests at a mil­i­tary hos­pi­tal in Juba, South Su­dan, on Wed­nes­day

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