Humanitarian Assistance to Women and Children in Support of the Peace Process in Northern Uganda
During the past 20 years of conflict in Uganda, chaos and displacement have been brought not only to the population of Northern Uganda but also many rural populations of the remotest parts of Southern Sudan. Within Southern Sudan, the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) has reined terror in three states and hundreds of lives have been lost. Women, children and men have been abducted and tens of thousands have been displaced and their livelihoods destroyed. Humanitarian access to these most needy populations has been denied and this has further exacerbated the poverty and isolation of the affected populations.
As agreed in the Cessation of Hostilities document signed by the Lord's Resistance Army and the Government of Uganda on 26 August 2006, LRA soldiers and the associated population will be gathered and encamped in Southern Sudan for the duration of the on going peace talks which are taking place in the regional capital of Juba.
Working with the Government of Southern Sudan and in close coordination with the UN in Uganda, the UN system in Southern Sudan is preparing to provide humanitarian assistance to up to 2,000 women and children associated with the LRA. The women and children will be gathered inside Southern Sudan at two sites, where for the first time since leaving their homes they will be able to access basic emergency services. Mindful of the impact that LRA activity has had on communities in Southern Sudan, the local population will also benefit from services.
The Austrian contribution is dedicated to the provision of humanitarian assistance to these women and children, which will be an important step in supporting the peace process in Northern Uganda. In the event of the peace process failing, the re-allocation of funds for the provision of dedicated humanitarian assistance in South Sudan will be re-negotiated between UNICEF and ADA.