Humanitarian presence in South Sudan upheld despite fighting

by Danish Refugee Council | Danish Refugee Council (DRC) - Denmark
Wednesday, 8 January 2014 10:18 GMT

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Since Mid-December the fighting in South Sudan have resulted in more than 200.000 internally displaced. At the same time causing the evacuation of international humanitarian staff leaving limited capacity for emergency response. Danish Refugee Council has maintained its presence in the country to assist the UN in continuing the most urgent assistance and prepare for the needed emergency response.

"We have had to evacuate part of our staff because of the fierce fighting in South Sudan, but we have been able to keep key staff members in the country and at the moment we have 15 international staff in place. It was crucial for us to maintain our presence, to support UN efforts to keep up basic operations and prepare the needed emergency response," says Head of Emergency, Rasmus Stuhr Jakobsen.

Danish Refugee Council has maintained its activities in the refugee camps in Maban hosting refugees from the conflict between Sudan and South Sudan. At the same time Danish Refugee Council is responding to the new internal conflict and was one of the three international organizations that participated in a UN mission to northern South Sudan around the town of Malakal, which is destroyed by intense fighting and where the majority of the 100,000 inhabitants have been forced to flee.

"The displaced population in Malakal is very serious, and in cooperation with the UN, we have begun the establishment of water supply , latrines and communication. We hope to resume relief work in full scale, but we can already see that we will need additional resources. We are allocating money from our own emergency fund and together with funds from the EU and Danida , we should be able to expand current efforts , "says Rasmus Stuhr Jakobsen.

Danish Refugee Council has been operating in Sudan since 2004. When South Sudan gained independence in 2011, the Danish Refugee Council was already present in the country. The organization is now active in four regions of South Sudan - Upper Nile State, Northern Bahr El Ghazal , Warrap and Central Equatoria.