Rwandans on various social media platforms yesterday joined in the campaign calling on world leaders to intervene in the crisis in South Sudan.
Though the death toll is not clear, the April 15-16 attacks carried out allegedly by elements from the Nuer tribe have awakened social media users consciousness, compelling them to call on the belligerents to cease fire and urge intervention from various countries.
More than 1 million of the 14 million south Sudanese have been forced to flee their homes while tens of thousands of people have been killed in the skirmishes.
Graphico Images of dead bodies, some of them decomposing or burnt up, have been making rounds mostly on the social media platforms; Twitter and Facebook.
Most Rwandans who took to social media to call for intervention called on the United Nations and other humanitarian organisations not to abandon South Sudanese in a time of need as they did with Rwanda 20 years ago during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
A social media enthusiast who goes by the handle @minamude said Rwanda’s case is not a distant past and should be a warning of the consequences of letting a conflict such as the one in South Sudan continue.
@PNyaikamba suggested that a trip to the Kigali Genocide Memorial should be encouraged for leaders to show them the consequences of letting atrocities go unchecked.
“I think a trip to the Rwanda memorial museum should be mandatory for all African leaders,” she wrote.
“Has UN learnt anything from the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda? This rhetoric of never again should stop!” Nimes Munenwa who goes by the handle, @nimes318 wrote: Twenty years ago the world watched when members of our families were being slaughtered. Unfortunately, they are doing the same to South Sudan.
A journalist, Fiona Mbabazi (@Fifilyn), called on the UN to salvage their already tainted image by bringing to an end the atrocities in South Sudan.
“Hoping they learnt their lesson from us and want to change their tainted name by helping South Sudan,” Mbabazi wrote on Twitter.
The ongoing South Sudan clashes have been compared by many to the 1994 Genocide that claimed over a million lives.
In a White House statement yesterday, the US said they were horrified by the scale of atrocities taking place, arguing that it is a betrayal to the South Sudanese people.
“These acts of violence are abominable. They are a betrayal of the trust the South Sudanese people have put in their leaders. This is exactly the violence and suffering the South Sudanese people fought for decades. Both President Kiir and Riek Machar must make clear that attacks on civilians are unacceptable, perpetrators of violence on both sides must be brought to justice, and the cycle of violence that has plagued South Sudan for too long must come to an end,” the statement reads in part.
The fighting erupted on December 15 last year, following an alleged coup that the South Sudanese government blamed on president Kiir’s former deputy Riek Machar.
The conflict has so far disrupted oil production, which is the country’s main foreign exchange earner. Both the government and the rebels have large delegations in Addis Ababa,
Ethiopia for peace talks that have so far not come to a point of truce.
The Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), a regional bloc, announced on Tuesday it had postponed by another week the second round of peace talks aimed at ending more than three months of conflict.