UNMISS concerned about reports of military buildup of the Agwelek forces in Upper Nile State
Juba, 1 February 2023: The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), wishes to raise serious concerns over the reported buildup of the Agwelek forces in Upper Nile state in the past few days. The Mission urges these forces, loyal to General Johnson Olony, to refrain from any actions or movements that might pose threats to civilians and affect humanitarian operations in Upper Nile and Northern Jonglei.
UNMISS peacekeepers are increasing their presence in the area, and the Mission is verifying reports of movements and mobilisation. The Mission continues to engage with Government, State officials, and other leaders to prevent any further escalation of tensions, following fierce fighting that began last November.
With the historic visit of His Holiness Pope Francis, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Moderator of the Church of Scotland to South Sudan expected to take place this week, UNMISS appeals to national and community leaders to exercise restraint and commit to peace and dialogue.