What Has Happened to the World’s Newest Republic?

After decades of nightmarish violence, the new predominantly Christian nation of South Sudan declared independence with United Nations supervision and help from such celebrities as George Clooney -- and thousands of former refugees known as "The Lost Boys of Sudan." But now, violence rages once more.

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“People are scattered. They sleep in the cold, without food or water. This calamity was never anticipated. Nobody dreamed about it. But it is here now,” said the staff member.

Hundreds of thousands of Sudanese have sought refuge at U.N. compounds across Sudan. The Open Doors team had contact with a student who is at a compound in Juba who reported that “the situation in the U.N. compound is not good; people are suffering from hunger and thirst. Children have already started dying,” the staff member told

the Open Doors headquarters in the Netherlands.

The local team is particularly worried about rumors that there are many who are considering joining the fighting out of fear for their lives.

“People are badly affected,” he added. “I heard on U.N. radio yesterday evening a young child explain that she could not sit for her exams because of the war. She was supposed to study for a postponement of the exam, but was unable to do so because she had to leave all her notebooks when they fled.

“The child said her parents were crying all day over relatives that were killed and that made her very sad. Hearing her speak like that, without any hope for the future, broke my heart and left me sobbing.

“Please pray with us for peace!”

“Two and a half million South Sudanese died for the creation of this new state,” notes Clooney. “With robust international action and statesmanship by South Sudan’s leaders, millions more deaths can be prevented.”

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Rob Kerby, Senior Editor
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