UNMISS launches series of social cohesion forums among communities in Torit West County
In the past two years, frequent incidents of child abductions have become a security threat in Torit, Kapoeta and other parts of the Eastern Equatoria region. Civil society organizations have therefore called for an inter-state dialogue to put an end to the inhumane practice.
“Child abductions are highest during the raining season. As youth, we want to end this, but are helpless because the abductors usually operate with weapons. We call on authorities to deploy forces here to help us protect the children,” says Sabastian Grato.
The Iribook youth leader spoke at a social cohesion forum organized by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan. The event is part of a series of get-togethers aimed at creating the conditions for peaceful, inter-communal coexistence.
“We want to provide an opportunity for the communities of Imurok payam (district) to hear these messages of peace and know what is going on in their state. We hope this will help them identify seething problems and find solutions for them,” says Marko Miljevic, a Civil Affairs Officer serving with the UN peacekeeping mission, adding that improved community relations will facilitate the delivery of necessary services to the civilian population.
The head chief of Imurok, Anthony Ohide, used the opportunity to make another important appeal to authorities and peace partners. used the forum to appeal to state authorities and peace partners to re-establish the destroyed schools and health facilities for the citizens there.
“The school and health facilities of our village were destroyed during the conflict. We need assistance to help our children access education once again and for our community to have access to health care.”