As you may have seen on the news over the weekend, a fresh wave of fighting has broken out in Juba, the capital of South Sudan. Below is a summary of what has happened and prayer request from Tabitha Muthui, our fundraising and communications manager normally based in South Sudan. Providentially Tabitha is currently in the UK and has been able to postpone her return until the situation is more stable.
As the world was relaxing and enjoying football and tennis, South Sudan was tense and full of fear.
Last Thursday conflict erupted between troops loyal to President, Salvir Kirr and those loyal to First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar. This came as a blow to the country which has been striving to regain peace since December 2013, and to the transitional government which formed in April of this year in a bid end conflict.
On Friday the two leaders publicly condemned the fighting in a joint declaration but, whilst this was happening, soldiers from both sides were fighting and killing one another at the presidential palace. Whilst the leaders seemed to hope for peace, the two sides harbor deep resentment, mistrust and hatred towards each other which is not quickly resolved.
South Sudan gained independence on 9 July 2011. Five years on, instead of enjoying the much hoped-for peace, civilians were hiding from guns and grenades in the capital.The death toll has now reached 272, since Thursday, including civilians and 2 Chinese peacekeepers. Gunfire and explosions have been heard across the city all weekend and friends of mine have been trapped in their compounds, others in offices and the airport, too scared to leave.
Despite this, AID will continue to support South Sudan in every season and pray and work for deep change and lasting peace.
Please join with us in praying for:
- God to soften the hearts of South Sudan’s leaders and soldiers. Pray they would find peaceful ways of solving disagreement.
- Protection and peace for the women, children and families supported by AID’s Trumpeter Community Health and Manna Microfinance programmes.
- Protection and the comfort of God’s peace for AID staff and volunteers in South Sudan.
- Wisdom for missionaries and aid workers who are currently locked up in the country, and for God to open up evacuation routes.
- God to protect the women and children of South Sudan who are now sheltering from rain and bullets.
- God to raise up a good leadership for the people of South Sudan.
- God to restore the economy of South Sudan.