South Sudan Revenge Killings Leave 80 People Dead in Lakes State

About 80 people have died in intercommunal violence in South Sudan’s Lakes State in the past week, a local government minister and a lawmaker said.

The clashes are “a continuation of revenge killings” that have occurred “on and off” in the central region of the East African nation since 2012, state Information Minister Dhieu Wal Takpiny said Thursday by phone from the local capital, Rumbek. Communities have previously fought over grazing land, he said.

“The situation remains tense and can resume anytime,” Zachariah Matur Makuer, a member of parliament for Rumbek, said by phone from the national capital, Juba. “There are no signs especially on the part of the government to restore calm.”

Army spokesman Philip Aguer said the state governor is in contact with President Salva Kiir regarding the issue. He declined to comment further when reached by phone in Juba.

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