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PIBOR - 15 Jul 2017

UN peacekeepers rescue aid workers under 'heavy fire' in Pibor

File photo: The Indian battalion patrolling in Chindura [UNMISS]
File photo: The Indian battalion patrolling in Chindura [UNMISS]

The UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) says its Indian peacekeepers early Thursday rescued more than a dozen aid workers who came under “heavy fire from unknown gunmen” in Pibor town.

The UN peacekeeping mission said in a statement that its troops were alerted to the incident in the early hours of Thursday morning.

“When they arrived at the compound, about three kilometres from the UN base, there was a flurry of about 150 shots fired by the attackers using automatic weapons. The peacekeepers responded by firing warning shots into the air which caused the two groups of attackers to flee,” partly reads the statement.

The statement further said about 40 attackers were involved and the aid workers were evacuated from the compound unharmed as sporadic gunfire continued.

“As the incident unfolded, the Indian battalion was alerted to an attempt to infiltrate another humanitarian compound nearby. They quickly responded by sending a team of peacekeepers who once again forced the offenders to flee. The peacekeeping contingent sent troops to check on other humanitarian compounds in the area and conducted a patrol of the town later that morning,” it said.

The international medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) condemned the latest attack on its clinics in Pibor.

The aid group said in a statement that six to ten unidentified armed men broke into its clinic in Pibor town and injured two staff members after threatening other team members with guns early Thursday morning.