This report was originally published on Satellite Sentinel Project.
Though the total number of damaged or destroyed homes is unknown, at least 10 huts were burned since February 9, 2014 in Duk Payuel, in South Sudan’s Jonglei state, as seen in satellite images reviewed by DigitalGlobe analysts. The area is home to the John Dau Foundation’s Duk Lost Boys Clinic and another project supported by former Lost Boy Joseph Akol Makeer: the African Heart American Soul Foundation's orphanage.
Image 1: Overview of Duk Payuel town showing burned huts and looted buildings
Sources on the ground in Duk county tell the Satellite Sentinel Project, or SSP, that forces aligned with South Sudan’s armed opposition, loyal to former vice President Riek Machar, perpetrated these latest attacks. Phillip Thon Leek, a lawmaker from the county told Sudan Tribune that James Cuei Leek, the paramount chief was abducted in front of his children in Duk Payuel, arrested and detained by rebel forces.
An eyewitness shared that opposition forces started shooting randomly at people in Duk Payuel and warned the civilian to evacuate the town in two hours, promising that otherwise, they would kill anyone who insisted on staying. 34 young girls who were living at the African Soul American Heart orphanage are now being evacuated, although some are still missing.
IMAGES 2 and 3: Though the total number of damaged or destroyed homes in Duk is unknown, at least 10 huts were burned in the area reviewed by DigitalGlobe analysts, who also identified buildings that had been looted between February 9, 2014 and March 5, 2014.
Though the total number of damaged or destroyed homes in Duk is unknown, at least 10 huts were burned in the area reviewed by DigitalGlobe analysts, who also identified buildings that had been looted between February 9, 2014 and March 5, 2014.Even before the latest fighting, an influx of displaced people from other parts of the country had already strained the John Dau Foundation clinic past its capacity and also attracted armed elements from nearby areas. Now, it has been affected by the violence too. In response, clinic founder John Dau issued an open letter to South Sudanese opposition leader and former vice president Riek Machar saying he was “appalled by the widespread destruction of properties and unnecessary harassment of civilians.”
“I heard that our clinic’s fuel was looted by your men, food for malnourished children taken, medicines, equipment, beds, bed-sheets, doors, solar panels, medical equipment, computers, the clinic ambulance’s tires taken out, utensils, tools, tables, the medicines that cannot be carried by your men were set on fire and all of other essentials that enable the clinic to function have been looted by your soldiers. […]…The looting and destruction of this neutral medical facility, a clinic for peace is a huge blow to all tribes as our well-kept record shows that all the four major tribes in Jonglei State have benefited from services this clinic has been offering..”
IMAGES 4 and 5: Destruction and looting in Duk Payeul since February 9, 2014.