The UN slammed government-backed troops in South Sudan on Tuesday for ruthlessly targeting civilians in opposition-held areas, killing hundreds and using sexual violence, including gang-raping young children, as weapons of war.
The UN human rights office said its monitors had in recent months documented “what appear to be deliberate, ruthless and brutally violent attacks on civilians, particularly against women and children”.
The agency said at least 234 civilians were killed and many more injured in attacks between April 16 and May 24 by government and aligned forces and armed youth in villages in opposition-controlled areas in Mayendit and Leer in Unity State.
The agency said a “scorched earth” approach, and warned that some of the gross violations documented in its report might amount to “war crimes”.
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