- Senior SSPDF commanders attending training on human rights law in Torit, July 6, 2021 (UNMISS photo)
July 11, 2021 (TORIT) – 50 senior South Sudan Peoples Defence Forces (SSPDF) commanders in Eastern Equatoria state have been sensitized on international human rights laws to guide them in preventing crimes associated with sexual violence committed by uniformed personnel.
The training, organised by the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMISS), took place in the Eastern Equatoria state capital, Torit last week.
The Human Rights Division of UNMISS annually organises similar trainings.
“We schedule such sessions regularly to make you aware of your responsibilities to the people of South Sudan,” Anthony Nwapa, a UNMISS Human Rights Officer told the UN mission’s website.
“If the rights of people are respected, they will be happy, and when they are happy, there is peace,” he added.
The one-day event was a refresher course for SSPDF commanders of their obligation to the joint communiques signed between the government of South Sudan and the UN include compliance with the commitment to address conflict-related sexual violence; and approaching the protection of civilians in a professional manner pursuant to established military codes of conduct.
The UNMISS Human Rights Division aims to inform the armed forces in South Sudan on ways to maintain good professional conduct, monitored by the international community.
Globally, countries that do not adhere to internationally accepted human rights standards are listed for committing crimes against humanity punishable with sanctions; sentencing of violators through international criminal courts; stopping military support to the violating nation, among others.