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U.N. Urges End To South Sudan Violence

UNITED NATIONS, Aug. 22 (UPI) — The United Nations urged an end to violence in South Sudan Monday after more than 600 people reportedly died in clashes between ethnic groups in recent days.

The clashes between the Murle and Lou Nuer communities in the newly independent country’s state of Jonglei left nearly 1,000 others wounded, the U.N. Mission in South Sudan said in a press release.

The deadly confrontations between the Murle and Lou Nuer communities in Jonglei have come amid cattle raids that led to the theft of 26,000 to 30,000 cattle, the United Nations said.

Homes have also been destroyed, displacing thousands of people, and local authorities said nearly 200 people may have been abducted, the United Nations said.

Hilde Johnson, the head of U.N. South Sudan mission and the secretary-general’s special representative for South Sudan, urged restraint among all ethnic communities.

“This cycle of violence must stop,” she said. “That so many people have been killed and injured again in such wanton destruction is unacceptable.”

She said the mission would support reconciliation efforts.

An assessment team from the mission has visited areas where the attacks occurred and will return to try to help foster reconciliation.

“The security of all South Sudanese people must come first,” said Johnson, who condemned looting and destruction of humanitarian facilities in Jonglei.

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

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