In the second attack on a United Nations post in southern Sudan in less than a week, two peacekeepers from Bangladesh were wounded yesterday when 100 armed men tried to confine the blue helmets to their base in order to loot other compounds in Yambio near the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The two wounded men, part of a UN force supporting a peace agreement that ended a two-decade-long civil war, were hit by ricocheting bullets rather than any fired at them, and initial indications are that the attackers were seeking communications equipment, the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) reported today.
Three of the gunmen were killed in the attack, which occurred just past midnight on Saturday and ended soon after local Sudanese troops reached the scene. UNMIS said security will be upgraded at the base.
Last Wednesday, a local guard was killed and a staff member and a second local guard seriously wounded when two gunmen attacked a UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) compound in Yei, forcing the suspension of the planned repatriation of some of the hundreds of thousands of Sudanese who fled the civil war.
UNMIS, which is authorized to field up to 10,000 military personnel to support implementation of last year’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the Government and southern rebels, currently has 6,300 uniformed personnel on the ground. A separate conflict in Sudan’s western Darfur region was not covered by the agreement.