Keeping truth tellers safe in South Sudan

Urgent call to protect truth-tellers in South Sudan from government crackdown on media, NGOs and activists

To our courageous, committed friends in South Sudan:

we will do everything in our power to keep you safe – and to keep you telling your important truths

Panicky government launches campaign of oppression against NGOs, activists and media trying to uncover and deal with crimes against humanity and environment being routinely committed in South Sudan.

It is a horrible truth:

South Sudanese women are being raped while searching for clean water for their families.

And one big reason why the women’s searches are so long and difficult and thus risky is that many of the wells in the women’s villages are contaminated with lead and other pollutants spewed into the ground water by such greedy oil companies as Petronas and China National Petroleum – the same companies that are now ramping up production in the country.

It is a horrible truth that the government of South Sudan does not want known.

To prevent it from getting out, the government has cracked down on Médecins Sans Frontières. This world-renowned provider of emergency  medical treatment had issued a report detailing the rapes perpetrated in Bentiu County, which is located – in a total lack of coincidence – in an oil-producing region.
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This crack-down is reportedly part of a systematic campaign launched by the government of South Sudan to prevent the unrest gripping Sudan from spreading to its neighbor to the south. Encompassing other humanitarian organizations in South Sudan and the country’s media, the campaign is based on the government’s – well-founded – fear that its people could be as fed up with its corruption and failure to run the country as those of its neighbor to the north.

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We at For South Sudan call upon our colleagues in the media to ensure that the world follows these stories, as this coverage is the best way of preventing further killings and intimidation of aid workers, activists and journalists.