NAIROBI, Kenya — A new report written for the African Union and made public on Monday presented an especially grim picture of South Sudan’s civil war, blaming government forces and rebels for the declining humanitarian situation in the world’s newest country.
The nine-page report, written by an evaluation commission for the African Union and dated Jan. 29, listed five violations of a cease-fire agreement, including an episode in October in which government forces were responsible for the deaths of 50 people who died from suffocation inside a shipping container. Investigators said the rebels had looted United Nations barges and ambushed civilians, killing or wounding about a dozen people in an attack in December.
“There is limited consolidation of peace, a worrying economic decline and violence ongoing,” the report said. “The economy is in particularly dire straits, with foreign reserves rapidly diminishing, growing inflation and rapid depreciation of the national currency.”
South Sudan, which gained independence from Sudan in 2011, has been steeped in ethnic conflict since violence broke out in 2013. Thousands of people have died, thousands more are on the brink of starvation, and there have been repeated allegations of mass rape, massacres of civilians and forced cannibalism.