20 S Sudan Soldiers Charged for Killing Civilians


JUBA, South Sudan - More than 20 South Sudanese soldiers have been charged with murdering civilians, a South Sudanese military official said Monday.

South Sudanese military spokesman Col. Philip Aguer told reporters on Monday that since mid-December, when fighting broke out in the capital Juba before to spreading across the country, at least 70 soldiers have been arrested and charged over a range of crimes from homicide to looting. Some suspects had gone into hiding after learning an investigation is underway, he said.

He dismissed a recent report by Human Rights Watch urging South Sudan and Uganda -whose militaries are jointly trying to put down a rebellion led by a former deputy president - to investigate the alleged use of cluster bombs in Jonglei state.

The United Nations says both warring factions in South Sudan have committed rights violations.

Meanwhile, a cargo plane chartered by the International Organization for Migration carrying relief supplies from Juba to Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, crashed on landing at the Rubkona airstrip Monday, killing one crew member and injuring three others. The wing of the plane collided with two vehicles parked on the runway, causing a fire to break out, the group said in a statement.

The group has been delivering relief supplies to displaced people across South Sudan.

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