U.S. imposes fresh sanctions on 2 South Sudan officials over sexual violence
In a statement today, the U.S. Department of Treasury said Governor Alfred Futuyo of Western Equatoria and SSPDF commander Gen. James Nando “abused their positions of political and military authority to carry out acts of sexual violence against citizens of South Sudan.”
JUBA, JUNE 20, 2023 (SUDANS POST) – The United States has imposed fresh sanctions against two senior South Sudan government and army officials it accuses of perpetuating sexual-related violence in the country’s western-most state of Western Equatoria where fighting between armed groups continued despite signing of the revitalized peace agreement in September 2018.
In a statement marking International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict, U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), said Governor Alfred Futuyo of Western Equatoria State, SSPDF commander James Nando “abused their positions of political and military authority to carry out acts of sexual violence against citizens of South Sudan.”
It said armed opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO) forces led by Governor Futuyo kidnapped at least 887 civilians and gang-rapped 43 of them between April and August 2018, just as peace talks between the government and the SPLM-IO were ongoing in the Sudanese capital Khartoum.
The statement said Futuyo is sanctioned for “targeting of women, children, or any civilians through the commission of acts of violence (including killing, maiming, torture, or rape or other sexual violence), abduction, forced displacement, or attacks on schools, hospitals, religious sites, or locations where civilians are seeking refuge.”
The statement said forces commanded by General James Nando, an SPLA-IO commander turned South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) general, are responsible for attacks against civilians in Western Equatoria State in 2021 and are “responsible for at least 64 instances of rape and sexual slavery against civilians.”
“Between April and August 2018, Nando directly or through his commanders, officers, and fighters subordinate to him oversaw the abduction of at least 505 women and 63 girls. The United Nations Mission in South Sudan documented 43 cases of rape and gang-rape that occurred during these attacks.
“Nando was aware of these abuses and did not prevent, discourage, or punish fighters responsible for sexual violence when it happened under his watch, thereby encouraging fighters to continue these abuses,” it added.
Deputy Secretary of Treasury Wally Adeyemo said “The United States rejects all forms of sexual violence—which women and children bear the brunt of—in armed conflict. We remain committed to holding perpetrators and enablers of conflict-related sexual violence accountable so long as this scourge exists.”
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