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South Sudan: Return convoys from Uganda suspended following attacks

Briefing notes

South Sudan: Return convoys from Uganda suspended following attacks

20 October 2006

UNHCR today temporarily suspended return convoys from northern Uganda to South Sudan following reports yesterday that unknown gunmen killed at least 38 civilians in a string of attacks in Southern Sudan. We were scheduled to run the 16th convoy from Moyo, in northern Uganda, to Kajo Keiji in South Sudan this morning. We will be monitoring the security situation closely before deciding when to resume the repatriation convoys.

Since December 2005, UNHCR has voluntarily repatriated 14,000 south Sudanese from neighbouring countries, including 4,500 from Uganda. There are currently 350,000 south Sudanese refugees in camps in neighbouring countries, and another 4 million internally displaced south Sudanese.

The signing of a Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005 ended 21 years of war in the south and paved the way for the return of millions of internally displaced people and refugees in surrounding countries. But the two decades of conflict left South Sudan in ruins, and those who have made the choice to return home have faced real hardship. UNHCR and its partners are working to ensure their return is sustainable, including through the provision of basic services.