Aid workers freed in South Sudan

Ten aid workers, who were detained while on an assessment mission, and then were held by an armed opposition group for more than five days, have been freed.

The humanitarian staff, all nationals, included one from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), two from UNICEF, one from the South Sudanese Development Organization, two from ACROSS, three from Plan International and one from Action Africa Help.

The Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan, Alain Noudehou, confirmed that the workers were returned safely and in good health. He commended the tireless work of those who secured their release, particularly the efforts of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to facilitate their return to Juba.

He expressed outrage at what he described as a deteriorating environment for humanitarian work in South Sudan. Earlier the same week, a humanitarian worker was shot and killed while returning to check on a health clinic that had been looted in Leer County. This most recent death brings to 100 the total number of aid workers killed since the conflict began in December 2013.

[UNOCHA]

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