South Sudan’s conflict has let no-one, neither young nor old, escape. Children

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South Sudan’s conflict has let no-one, neither young nor old, escape. Children

South Sudan’s conflict has let no-one, neither young nor old, escape. Children

South Sudan’s conflict has let no-one, neither young nor old, escape. Children have been forcibly recruited to fight. At the other end of the generational spectrum, men who should be retired have also signed up. Lokocho Konyi, who is 65, was one of “many, many” men his age involved in frontline combat during one of several waves of inter-communal fighting that preceded the current conflict, which itself broke out in December 2013. In May that year, Lokocho was shot in the hip near the town of Bor. His treatment so far has been “an operation, and some Panadol”, he says defiantly, and the bullet is still lodged in his right side. He walks with crutches and currently lives in a camp for people forced to leave their homes because of the fighting, in the capital Juba. “I hear that you don’t have old men in your armies, but here that issue is quite different,” he says to a UNHCR team of Western staff visiting the camp. “I was angry that other people were eating good things but my people didn’t get those things. That’s why I had to fight. If I was not shot I would still be there. You don’t believe me, I see, but it’s true.” Image by UNHCR/@andrewmcconnellphoto Text by UNHCR/Mike Pflanz #SouthSudan #IDPs #Africa #displaced #elderly #conflict
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