Nine aid workers were killed in South Sudan in November, the deadliest month for humanitarian workers in the world’s youngest nation since December 2013, the UN said on Wednesday.
The UN Office for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a report released in Juba that six humanitarian workers were killed in Duk, Jonglei, one in Ikotos, Eastern Equatoria, and two in Awerial, Lakes.
“Fighting forced the relocation of at least 47 aid workers in six incidents in Eastern Equatoria, Jonglei, and Unity,” said the UN.
A total of 103 humanitarian access incidents were reported in November, compared to 116 in October, the report said, noting that six security incidents forced the suspension of aid activities in different locations.
During the month, local authorities in various locations continued to demand involvement in non-governmental organization staff recruitment and procurement processes.
“Incidents of violence, some of which led to the death of aid workers, substantially disrupted aid operations, forcing the suspension of response activities in multiple locations,” OCHA said.
Some 4 million South Sudanese have been forced to flee their homes in the conflict that erupted nearly four years ago following a political dispute between President Salva Kiir and Vice-President Riek Machar, according to the UN.
Despite an August 2015 peace agreement, violence has continued.
According to OCHA figures, nearly half of the country’s 12 million people are hungry, including about 1.7 million on the brink of famine.
OCHA said fighting in southern Unity forced the relocation of aid workers and the suspension of food and nutrition assistance to nearly 34,000 people.