Africa UN cites ‘horrendous’ human rights situation in South Sudan

UN cites ‘horrendous’ human rights situation in South Sudan

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Jordan's Zeid Raad al-Hussein speaks during a news conference at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014. Zeid drew comparisons between the Ebola outbreak and the Islamic State group Thursday, labeling them "twin plagues" upon the world that were allowed to gain strength because of widespread neglect and misunderstanding. (AP Photo/Keystone, Martial Trezzini)
U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Jordan’s Zeid Raad al-Hussein.

The U.N. human rights chief says a report describing children and the disabled being burned alive and fighters allowed to rape women as a form of payment shows South Sudan is facing “one of the most horrendous human rights situations in the world.”

Rights chief Zeid Raad al-Hussein laments that the crisis has been “more or less off the international radar.” The nearly 5-year-old country fell into civil war two years ago.

His office says attacks against civilians, forced disappearances, rape and other violations could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The U.N report released Friday is the work of an assessment team deployed in South Sudan between October and January. It says “state actors” bear most responsibility for the crimes.