South Sudan: Rebels kill hundreds in Mosque, Catholic church and hospital

Injured survivors

Injured survivors

Bishop William Kenney of Birmingham has called for an end to the violence and suffering in South Sudan, after visiting the country. His message comes after the disturbing news of violence in the Bentiu region, that has left hundreds of women, children and men who had sought refuge in a hospital, a Mosque and a Catholic church, dead.

“While the warring factions delay in finding a lasting solution to this conflict, ordinary people have been catapulted into dire suffering, unable to return to their homes and farm their land, they are now crammed into church and UN compounds, in urgent need of food, clean water and shelter.”

Bishop Kenney has just returned from South Sudan where he met with churchmen from the Catholic and Anglican churches as well as the British ambassador to South Sudan, Ian Hughes, to discuss what support the Catholic Church of England and Wales can offer to the people of South Sudan.

In just four months, more than one million people have been displaced from their homes and an estimated 4.9 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. Bishop Kenney praised the work of both churches in their humanitarian response to the crisis as well as their commitment to campaigning for peace. He continued:

“The people of South Sudan and their church leaders are making heroic efforts to come to terms with the recent violence while also promoting peaceful solutions to the ongoing divisions.”

CAFOD’s Country Representative for South Sudan, Jane Andanje, says that ending the conflict through a sustainable, negotiated settlement is the only way to give people the security they need to return to their homes and fields, and begin to rebuild their lives. She said:

“For farmers, the last few months have been disastrous. Planting requires people, seeds and equipment to be in the right place at the right time during the planting season of April and May. This has not happened because of the large numbers of people who have been forced from their homes by this conflict.”

Find out how you can support CAFOD’s appeal to help vulnerable communities in South Sudan. Visit

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