Daniel Kon Malwal, the assistant to Bishop Ruben Akurdit of Bor, sent this e-mail this morning to the Anglican Peace and Justice Network:
I have been away from communication online for long because of the fighting in Bor that make me flee to the village of Werkok. When the SPLA retook the Town on December 25, 2013 I came back to Town. However, the news of Lau Nuer Youth coming to attack town came and alarmed the civil population who were back to the town. All people deserted the Town and I with the Bishop Akurdid took our journey to Juba on December 29, 2013.
Nevertheless, this morning the Lau Nuer youth took the control of Bor town after fighting with SPLA. Most of the Diocese of Bor Congregation is displaced and all villages of the archdeaconry of Baidit, Tong, Mathiang are all burned down by the Lau Nuer Youth. Majority of the people are under trees in Awerial County of Lake State [that is, they have crossed to the West Bank of the Nile River]. Other population fled to the area West of Baidit Payam and are under threat of attack from Lau Nuer Youth any time from today onward.
We are working on the document that will cover details about the incident with the Bishop Akurdid and we shall send it within 4to 5 days. There is still fighting, Now Bor Town is under Lau Nuer Youth, the next step will be on their way to Juba and government forces will fight them. The situation is bad. God bless You!
Rev. Daniel Kon Malual
the Secretary in the Office of Bishop for the Diocese of Bor
As the violence in South Sudan has unfolded, the key parallel in my mind has been similar events in 1991. Then, a split in the SPLA led by Riak Machar, led to what is remembered as the “Bor Massacre.” An army of Nuer youth marched on Bor, killing thousands of Dinka and creating an international Dinka diaspora that persists today. A key difference between 1991 and 2013, however, seems to be that civilians in Bor and elsewhere have had more warning of the attack and have been able to flee. But the lesson remains the same: acts of mass violence like this can have reverberations decades later.