The head of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on Thursday has called for a halt to the unspeakable violence against children in South Sudan involving the castration of boys who were left to die and the gang rapes and killings of girls as young as 8.
Children were also tied together and their throats were slit; others were thrown into burning buildings. The attacks that Anthony Lake, executive director of Unicef, has described left 129 children dead within a three-week period in May alone.
Statement by UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake on brutal violence against children in South Sudan
“The violence against children in South Sudan has reached a new level of brutality.
“The details of the worsening violence against children are unspeakable, but we must speak of them.
“As many as 129 children from Unity State were killed during only three weeks in May. Survivors report that boys have been castrated and left to bleed to death … Girls as young as 8 have been gang raped and murdered … Children have been tied together before their attackers slit their throats … Others have been thrown into burning buildings.
“Children are also being aggressively recruited into armed groups of both sides on an alarming scale – an estimated 13,000 children forced to participate in a conflict not of their making. Imagine the psychological and physical effects on these children – not only of the violence inflicted on them but also the violence they are forced to inflict on others.
“In the name of humanity and common decency this violence against the innocent must stop.”
We can’t sit back while children are facing such brutal violence. In South Sudan, and all over the world, millions of children are facing extreme violence.