United Nations Country Team launches Interim Cooperation Framework

The United Nations Country Team in South Sudan, along with government leaders and other partners officially launched the Interim Cooperation Framework (ICF) at Juba Grand Hotel today. The Interim Cooperation Framework is the development strategy of the United Nations Country Team and functions as an interim framework in 2016 and 2017, which corresponds to the transitional period of the peace agreement.

“The Transitional Government of National Unity is committed to its continued cooperation with the UN, and the ICF is a welcome initiative and a sign that we can do more together to make progress. The presentation we have seen today makes it clear how it can help create new momentum and new focus in our cooperation at this pivotal moment,” said Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Hon. Mary Jervase Yak. “The ICF provides us with robust analysis and clear strategic direction that reflect the views and inputs from many different perspectives and partners.”

The newly launched ICF requires UN agencies to be better targeted, based on a strong understanding of the context and guided by the following key principles: realism in setting goals and targets in a country confronted with a significant development deficit; recovery from the serious set-backs of recent years; resilience of people, communities and institutions; reaching the most vulnerable who have been harmed most by the crisis; strengthening institutions and capacities so that they can better sustain peace and stability.

“I hope that this event marks the start of a new, strong and fruitful partnership between the Government of South Sudan, the donor community and the UN system.  We all are aware that there is a significant amount of work to do to ensure a better future for the people of South Sudan after years of conflict and crisis.  It is high time that we collectively chart a new course towards peace and prosperity for this country,” said Special Representative of the Secretary-General Ellen Margrethe Loej at the launch event.

The goal of the ICF is to support the transformation of South Sudan towards peace and stability, and sustainable development, by focusing on five highly prioritized substantive areas: enhancing the resilience of local communities; strengthening social services for the most vulnerable; strengthening peace and governance; reinvigorating the local economy; cross-cutting improvement in the status of women and youth. The United Nations Country Team is also prepared to help assist with the formation of South Sudan’s national development plan.

“What should define this country are the dreams, the hopes and the aspirations that South Sudanese have for themselves and their beloved nation. As South Sudan dreams of a better future, I want to assure you that we are in this together. If indeed peace, recovery and sustainable development is what you desire, you will find in the United Nations a committed and enduring partner,” said Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, and United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative to South Sudan Eugene Owusu.

The ICF was developed and adopted jointly by all UN organizations operating in South Sudan, in consultation with their national and international partners. The United Nations Country Team, under the leadership of the Resident Coordinator, consists of FAO, IOM, OCHA, OHCHR, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNDSS, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFPA, UN Habitat, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNIDO, UNMAS, UNMISS, UNOPS, UN Women, WFP, and WHO.

As part of the improved coordination between agencies in South Sudan, the launch event also unveiled the new website and logo for the United Nations Country Team. The United Nations in South Sudan can be found online at, on Twitter at @UN_SouthSudan, and on Facebook at

Watch a short video on the new brand here: 

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National leaders from government, military, law enforcement, civil society, and the United Nations pose for a group photo. Photo: UNDP

United Nations and Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare hold national high level dialogue on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence

Representative leaders from government, civil society, and the United Nations participated at a national high level dialogue on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) between September 27-28, 2016 at Dembesh Hotel in Juba.

Against the backdrop of the July 2016 conflict in Juba, the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare intends to strengthen the implementation of the South Sudan National Action Plan 2015-2020 on UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security and Related Resolutions. One of the immediate effects of the conflict is the increase in reported cases of conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) against women and children.

The United Nations supported the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare to conduct this public dialogue on the National Action Plan as a way of providing the national leadership with a platform to highlight issues related to the theme, “Addressing Impunity on Sexual and Gender Based Violence in South Sudan.

Full story: High-level dialogue on Sexual Gender Based Violence held in South Sudan 

Full speech by the DSRSG/RC/HC/RR: high-level-dialogue-on-sgbv-unct-final


The Vice President of South Sudan H.E James Wani Igga speaks at the International Day of Peace in Juba.

South Sudan commemorates the International Day of Peace

The United Nations in South Sudan joined national peace actors including the South Sudan Peace and Reconciliation Commission (SSPRC), National Platform for Peace and Reconciliation (NPPR), civil society organizations, INGOS and the media to commemorate this year’s International Day of Peace under the national theme: Together We Can Heal the Nation. This day is celebrated globally every year on September 21.

These celebrations were marked by a series of activities including the launch of 100 days of activism which took place on September 14, 2016 at the SSPRC. This campaign which will last until the end of the year calls for joint efforts towards addressing peace and security in the country. Other events side included youth and women outreach activities and national prayers.

D/SRSG, Moustapaha Soumare, speaks at the International Day of Peace Celebrations at Nyakuron Cultural Center in Juba. Photo: UNDP

The official celebration held at Nyakuron Cultural Centre was marked by key note speeches from the Vice President of South Sudan, H.E. James Wani Igga, the Chairperson of the SSPRC, the Speaker of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly and the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General (D/SRSG), Moustapaha Soumare. There were also colorful performances by school children and youth groups.

Speaking on behalf of the UN at the official ceremony, the D/SRSG, Moustapaha Soumare, said that peace meant a society where people lived free. “It (peace)  is about building a global society in which people live free from poverty and share the benefits of prosperity,” he said.

UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner, George Okoth-Obbo (R) and Governor of Ruweng State, Mayol Kur Akuel (L) shake hands to mark the official opening of the camp. © UNHCR/Rocc Nuri

UNHCR opens a new refugee camp in northern Unity

The UN Refugee Agency officially opened a new camp at Pamir on September 01, 2016 in coordination with local authorities and South Sudan’s Commission for Refugee Affairs to provide better protection and services to Sudanese refugees relocating from Yida settlement and new arrivals from the war-torn Nuba Mountains.

The new camp, some 80 km south of the contested border with Sudan, is ready to accommodate up to 20,000 people at the moment. UNHCR and partners have so far demarcated 5,000 family plots, built a primary school and a health care centre. Drinking water is available through a sun-powered water pumping system and teachers are on site to start classes as soon as the school term resumes.

UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner George Okoth-Obbo, who was on a 3-day visit to South Sudan from Geneva, cut the ribbon together with the Governor of newly formed Ruweng State, Mayol Kur Akuei, Acting Commissioner for Refugee Affairs, John Dabi and UNHCR Director of Africa Bureau, Valentin Taspoba. Representatives from the Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and World Food Program (WFP) attended the official inauguration.

“Our aim is to ensure that refugees access to quality services according to international standards, but our long-term strategy is to provide them with the tools and means that enable them to become more self-reliant and less dependent on humanitarian assistance,” says Okoth-Obbo. “This means boosting education, investing in agriculture and skill development opportunities.”

In addition to hosting the newly opened Pamir, northern Unity has two other refugee settlements: Yida, right next to the contested border with Sudan, with a population of 59,000 people and Ajuong Thok, home to more than 40,000 refugees. The latter camp received some 10,000 new arrivals from South Kordofan in first eight months of 2016 as well as more than 4,400 refugees who had previously registered in Yida.

“With Ajuong Thok at full capacity, we had no option but opening a new camp,” says Okoth-Obbo. “We cannot thank enough the authorities and communities of South Sudan for being so generous and hospitable to the refugees. Without their support, we never would have been able to extend protection and assistance to refugees in the first place.”

Governor Akuei said that refugees and local communities have been living together peacefully for the past five years, sharing land and resources. “We appreciate the great cooperation with UNHCR and we hope that this partnership will go a long way as to also benefit our communities, who are often in worst conditions than the refugees”, he said.


Youth at the innovation workshop

Youth innovation challenge for peace launched in South Sudan

The United Nations Development Programme’s new Youth Innovation Challenge for Peace launched official activities on Thursday with an introduction workshop designed to explain the competition process, rules, and innovation principles. More than 120 young people gathered to learn about the competition, which aims to spark out-of-the-box innovative ideas on engaging young South Sudanese in peace building and as agents of change.

“We want to see South Sudan through your eyes- the eyes of young people who have fresh points of view and the creativity to tackle the complex issues you and your peers face”, said UNDP Acting Country Director Jean-Luc Stalon in opening remarks to participants at the workshop.

The Youth Innovation Challenge is organized by UNDP’s Community Security and Arms Control Project to specifically recognize the strength of youth-led initiatives and the impact of home-grown ideas on societies emerging from conflict.

Full story:

UN Humanitarian Chief condemns violence against civilians and aid workers in South Sudan

United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Stephen O’Brien, concluded his three-day mission to South Sudan today, calling for all parties to uphold their responsibilities to protect civilians, amidst fresh fighting that has displaced tens of thousands of people in multiple locations across the country.

“The people of this country have suffered far too much, and for far too long,” said USG O’Brien. “I am outraged by the heinous acts of violence that have been committed against civilians, including by members of the armed forces, and call for swift and decisive action to halt these abuses and bring the perpetrators to account.”

The humanitarian situation in South Sudan is catastrophic. More than half of the population – some 6.1 million people – are in need of humanitarian assistance. An estimated 4.8 million people are severely food insecure across the country, with a quarter of a million children facing severe acute malnutrition. Forced displacement remains a defining feature of the crisis, with some 1.6 million people internally displaced, and more than 900,000 having fled to neighbouring countries, including more than 60,000 who fled to Uganda in July alone. Protection of civilians is a paramount concern, with extensive reports received of rape and other forms of sexual violence during recent fighting, including in Juba and Wau.

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Humanitarian Coordinator condemns grave consequences for civilians of fighting in Wau

Following a one-day visit to Wau, the Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan has expressed shock and outrage regarding the loss of life, displacement, and suffering that civilians have endured as a result of the fighting.

“In Wau, as in so many other locations across this country, it is civilians who have borne the brunt of conflict,” said Mr. Eugene Owusu, Humanitarian Coordinator. “This is entirely unacceptable. All armed actors must immediately uphold their obligations to protect civilians and ensure that the guns remain silent in Wau.”


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May 26 South Sudan participants bring World Humanitarian Summit commitments home

South Sudan participants bring World Humanitarian Summit commitments home

Upon their return from the World Humanitarian Summit, which took place in Istanbul on 23-24 May, the Honorable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, Hussein Mar Nyuot, the Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan, Eugene Owusu, and Archbishop Daniel Deng Bul, briefed the press in Juba on their participation at the summit and the commitments made there. Read More

A South Sudanese mother holds her baby in a health facility in South Sudan. © UNOPS

Italy, UNOPS donate vehicles to Doctors With Africa CUAMM

The Italian Development Cooperation (IDC) in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) announced a donation of two vehicles to Doctors with Africa CUAMM, an international NGO that is supporting health systems strengthening in South Sudan to improve the delivery of basic and emergency healthcare services.

Dr. Dario Mariani, an IDC representative, attended the handover event in the presence of UNOPS Head of Programme, Richard Martin Schroeder, and CUAMM Deputy Country Manager, Paolo Ferrari.

Maternal mortality rate in South Sudan is high at 2, 243 per 100,000 live births. A child born in South Sudan has a 25 percent chance of dying before age five. Pregnant women often experience considerable time delays when trying to reach a health facility. They travel long distances by foot in search of health services, as many villages do not have roads and families do not have access to vehicles or public transportation. Many die from treatable complications. Read More

South Sudan commences World Blood Donor Day (WBDD) 2016 celebrations

Under the theme “Blood Connects Us All”, South Sudan has joined the rest of the world to celebrate this year’s World Blood Donor Day to acknowledge the crucial role that voluntary blood donors play in saving millions of lives worldwide.

Share life Give Blood is the message behind the massive voluntary blood donation campaign carried out by the NBTS and partners to celebrate WBDD.

The event was kicked off on 13th June with TV and Radio talk shows in Juba. Challenges in the context of the country and achievements so far related to blood safety, voluntary blood donation and its impact were discussed in different fora. Read More