Thursday, 24 April 2014

Very disturbing news from South Sudan

 I have just received the following from Larry Duffee who once worked in the ECSSS provincial office and now for an NGO in Juba. Please pray. Our hearts are broken.

Dear Friends:

I have been contacted by some of you recently regarding the current situation in South Sudan. I appreciate everyone's concern.

Bottom line is, the situation is not good. Last week was an especially disturbing week with fresh reports of assaults upon civilians of a horrific scale. Further attacks by rebel forces upon the territory of Upper Nile State make it quite probable that Upper Nile will fall, possibly within the next few days. If that happens the government of South Sudan will be mortally wounded since the last remaining oil fields are in Upper Nile - without them the government has no other revenue, no other means of paying soldiers and civil servants. Once the soldiers - most of whom have not been paid for months anyway - become disgruntled there could be a complete breakdown of law and order, even in Juba, which has largely been spared the suffering being experienced in other parts of the country.

We still feel safe in Juba, though we are keeping a close eye on developments. We had staff we had to evacuate from Renk over the Easter weekend, and we are discussing evacuation strategies should we decide we need to leave South Sudan. At this point we prefer to remain here, but should conditions begin to deteriorate in Juba then we would evacuate towards Kenya.

At this point I would ask people to continue to pray for South Sudan, for the people and the leaders, and for those of us that are serving here. If conditions deteriorate or we find ourselves evacuating, I will let you know so we can keep in touch.

You may share as much as you want, and you can identify me if you like. My heart breaks for what is happening. I cannot believe I was here to cheer this country into existence and may yet see it whimper into non-existence. This country needs prayers - for the leadership to abandon their warring ways, and for the suffering people. It's all just so, so sad.

Please take care of yourselves. Regardless of what happens, the people here will still need us and we have to be prepared to continue on as best we can.

Much love,

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