Jonglei's Pibor Commissioner: chiefs must cooperate with returning of abductees.
Joshua Konyi Irer, commissioner of Pibor county of Jonglei state in his office, January 23, 2012 (ST)
The voluntary repatriation of abducted children began in July following the state's inter-communal peace deal that was signed in May. According to Konyi, hundreds of children abducted from Dinka Bor, Lou Nuer, Anuak, Jie, Kachipo ethnic groups, among others, remained in captivity. He said that a total of 24 children have been returned to their homes and that the process is ongoing. He also accused chiefs in the areas of being party to the "criminal act" as they are given five cows in exchange for every child abducted. "I am a son of this place and I know who is still keeping abducted children," said Konyi, warning that he would go to the chiefs responsible himself and that if they do not cooperate they could face imprisonment. However, the abductions continue; on Wednesday a woman was reported to have been kidnapped from Koch village in Bor county. The governor of Jonglei state, Kuol Manyang, on Wednesday assured State Parliament during the reopening ceremony that "calm has finally returned to Jonglei after months of violence". Early this year large-scaleviolenceforced over 100,000 people to flee their homes, after 6,000 members of the Luo Nuer ethnic group entered Murle territory raiding cattle looking for people abducted in previous raids against them. (ST)
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