South Sudan President Salva Kiir’s government is using food as a weapon of war to target civilians by blocking life-saving aid in some areas, United Nations sanctions monitors told the Security Council in a confidential report (November 2017). During 2016 and 2017, the UN monitors said a military campaign by government troops in Wau and surrounding areas in Western Bahr el-Ghazal targeted civilians on ethnic grounds and displaced more than 100,000.
“The government has during much of 2017 deliberately prevented life-saving food assistance from reaching some citizens,” the monitors wrote. “These actions amount to using food as a weapon of war with the intent to inflict suffering on civilians the government views as opponents to its agenda.”
One humanitarian assessment mission told UN monitors 164 young children and elderly died from hunger and disease between January and September 2017.
Excerpts Food used as weapon of war in South Sudan, Reuters, Monday, 13 November 2017