Raw: Months of Fighting Devastates South Sudan


New graphic video shows severely malnourished children, ruined villages and communities displaced after months of violence in South Sudan. (May 13)


Leer, South Sudan - 8 May 2014

1. Medium of a severely malnourished girl in Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF - Doctors Without Borders) hospital

2. Close up of girl's face

3. The mother tending to her sick child

4. Mothers with their children waiting for medical treatment for their children

5. Wide of MSF Holland nutrition nurse Charles Mpona Kalin measuring a severely malnourished child

6. Close up of young girl being measured by nurse Charles Mpona Kalin

7. SOUNDBITE (English) Charles Mpona Kalin, MSF nutrition nurse:

"So you see today among the children we receive for day care we have six children and these six children can have suspected, we suspect measles infection."

8. Close of a sick girl

9. Medium of severely malnourished two-year-old boy Jacob Rit Wadaar with his mother Nyagaaw Biel Dhoar (Jacob died the day after he was filmed)

10. Close up of child's hand with needle for intravenous drip

11. Mid of sick and severely malnourished child lying on a straw mat on the floor

12. Burned huts in Leer

13. Wide of Leer resident Myabany Nhial trying to salvage what she can in the ruins of her destroyed home

14. Mid of one of Myabany Nhial's children standing in the middle of the ruins of her destroyed home as Myabany Nhial searches through the ruins

15. Close of Myabany Nhial' hand as she searches through ruins

16. A wide of a woman of woman living amidst the destruction with her children

17. Close up of a woman

18. A boy walking past the destroyed market place in Leer

19. Wide of Leer with rebel tanks under a tree with and rebel soldiers

20. Mid of rebel tanks

21. Close up of human skull on the ground covered in mud

22. Mid of bullets and bullet casings on the ground

23. Wide of residents and children looking into former water well, now filled to above the water level with garbage and corpses

24. Mid of residents and children looking into former water well.

25. Top shot of former water well

26. Close up of a skull inside the well

27. A girl and a boy standing in front of destroyed houses

28. Various of of children playing on a destroyed anti-aircraft gun


Months of fighting in South Sudan left many communities devastated.

The residents of town of Leer, in South Sudan's oil-rich Unity State, that was fiercely fought over and has changed hands a few times since fighting first broke out there in late January, are at risk of famine, with their homes and livelihoods destroyed.

The town is now in rebel hands and despite the apparent calm, the scars of the fighting remain and are visible everywhere.

The medical charity Medecins Sans Frontiers or Doctors without Borders left the town of Leer on the 28th of January because of safety reasons. Their hospital was destroyed in fighting. They returned in the first week of May.

The patients they admit now at the field hospital are not the war-wounded - but victims of hunger and disease. Most vulnerable among them are children.

On May 8, Nyagaaw Biel Dhoar brought her 2-year-old son, Jacob Rit Wadaar, to the clinic, in the hope that the MSF nurses would be able to save him.

She tried to keep breastfeeding him as he lay helpless in her arms. But it was too late - Jacob died of severe malnutrition the next day.

Often, the symptoms of malnutrition are compounded by disease.

Myabani Nhial, a mother of 10, made a living trading grain like sorghum before the fighting broke out.

Although her home and grain store has been reduced to a burnt-out shell, she keeps coming back in the hope of finding something, that might have survived.

Nhial showed AP her burnt out home, saying soldiers killed three of her children and looted her grain supplies.

Some communal water wells are now full of human remains and a human scull was seen lying in a field nearby, a grim reminder of the recent hostilities.

South Sudan was plunged into massive violence in December when President Salva Kiir accused his former vice president, Riek Machar, of trying to oust him in a coup.

Government and rebel leaders signed a peace treaty on last Friday, but violence again flared over the weekend, with both sides accusing the other of having broken the new accord, leaving the political future of the world's newest nation hanging in the balance.

More than 1.3 (m) million people have fled their homes and aid workers worry that mass hunger will soon set in.

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