South Sudan civil war death toll


An estimated 190,000 people have been killed in South Sudan’s civil war and when factors such as population displacement, disruption to health facilities and lack of food are included the death toll is at least 383,000, according to an independent study.

Fighting started in December 2013 after a political disagreement between President Salva Kiir and former vice president he sacked, Riek Machar.

A UN official said in 2016 50,000 people were killed and nearly a quarter of the population of 12 million uprooted by fighting, often along ethnic lines.
“About 383,000 South Sudanese died as a result of the civil war. The true number may be considerably higher,” said the study by researchers at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
“While it is plausible some insecurity would have persisted in South Sudan even without the civil war, we are confident a large majority of the 190,000 violent deaths were attributable to the war itself.”

Researchers used to focus on those killed in fighting in estimates of the violence of a conflict, but increasingly they also look at how war has impacted overall death rates by increasing factors such as hunger and infant mortality.

The study, which covered the period December 2013 to April this year, showed most deaths occurred in Jonglei, Unity and Equatoria states. The rate of deaths from violence peaked in 2016-2017.

Presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny would check government data before commenting.

Kiir signed a peace agreement with Machar and other rebel factions in the Ethiopian capital this month. A previous peace deal signed in 2015 fell apart a year later after clashes broke out between government forces and rebels.

In a sign of how fragile the situation is government forces and the largest rebel group, allied to Machar, clashed in the north of the country on Monday.