VATICAN CITY (CNS)—Caritas Internationalis launched an appeal for $ 3.4 million in aid to feed 35,000 Sudanese people who have suffered through violent conflict and years of drought.
"Violence in South Sudan is now worse than in Darfur," said
Alistair Dutton, Caritas' humanitarian director, in an Oct. 21
statement. Earlier in this decade, Darfur, in western Sudan, was the
site of an armed conflict that killed hundreds of thousands of people
and displaced millions.
"If the current peace deal unravels, we will be headed toward a
major catastrophe," Dutton said. Sudan is recovering from 22 years of
civil war that ended in 2005 with a comprehensive peace agreement
between the northern-based government and separatist forces in the
Caritas said that an upsurge of violence in the southern state
of Western Equatoria has forced 68,000 people from their homes. The
Vatican-based umbrella organization of Catholic charities said it plans
to bring aid to 25,000 people who are in need of immediate care.
Violence in the region has worsened since the arrival of members of the
Lord's Resistance Army, a militia force formerly based in Uganda,
In addition, in the southern state of Eastern Equatoria, two
years of drought have left hundreds of thousands of people in need,
Caritas said. The organization pledged to provide 10,000 people with
food aid and planting materials, and to train farmers to improve
farming techniques. The aim is to support people until the 2010
"People caught in drought or conflict in South Sudan need
urgent food aid, Dutton said, adding that "Caritas is able to reach
isolated villages and communities."