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Juba police kill 6 civilians in land dispute clashes

Juba police kill 6 civilians in land dispute clashes
Maj. Gen. Daniel Justin, Spokesperson of the South Sudan National police service. Courtesy

Six people were killed and one injured in land-related clashes between the local community of Juba County’s Kworijik area and security personnel on Tuesday, the National Police Service has said.

The police spokesperson, Maj.-Gen Daniel Justin, claims that organized forces had just arrived in the area to establish facts regarding a disputed land when area youth attacked them in the boma, north-west of Juba.

“Juba county commissioner with some of the staff (police) went their to check the situation, but they were attacked by the Mundari and Bari communities around that area,” Justin asserted.

As the result, he said six people lost their lives. The “six people were from the community. They were killed in the clashes between the communities and the police” – adding that they managed to arrest 53 suspects.

However, the Kworijik community local chiefs and members of parliament at both the state and national legislatures are yet to comment on the matter.

Land grabbing is the acquisition of land without regard for the interests of existing land rights holders, according to scholars.

Pulitzer Center report shows that Land Matrix database, which compiles data on land grabs from governments, companies, NGOs, the media and citizen contributions, has tracked about 2.5 million hectares of land grabbed in South Sudan since 2006.

In March 2023, about 50 alleged land grabbers were arrested in Gondokoro in Juba and were later sentenced to six months in prison each by a Central Equatoria State court.