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South Sudan: nine wounded fighters receive treatment after border clashes

03-04-2012 News Release 12/68

Juba (ICRC) – Following recent clashes along the border between Sudan and South Sudan, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) performed emergency surgery on nine wounded combatants in Bentiu Hospital in Unity state.

"Local health-care facilities were struggling to cope with the influx of the wounded from recent clashes, so an emergency surgical team was sent to Bentiu Hospital to perform essential surgery," said the ICRC's senior surgeon, Dr Tesfaye Feleke. "The men we treated suffered mainly from gunshot injuries and required surgery to the head, chest and extremities. It is vital to respond rapidly to weapon-related injuries, as every second counts."

The ICRC donated surgical consumables, including wound-dressing materials and fluids, as well as drugs and other essential items to Bentiu Hospital and Bentiu Military Hospital to help them cope in the event of further casualties.

Since South Sudan declared its independence from Sudan in July 2011 after a protracted civil war, the armed clashes that continue to occur in border areas have resulted in numerous casualties.

The ICRC medical team based in Malakal Teaching Hospital provides paediatric, trauma and emergency surgical care. It is highly experienced in war surgery and is deployed to the scene of fighting if there are heavy casualties.

Furthermore, the ICRC has launched a five-year project to upgrade the water system, improve laboratory services and build a new operating theatre in Malakal Teaching Hospital. The ICRC medical team also delivers on-the-job training to hospital staff.

For further information, please contact:
Ewan Watson, ICRC Juba, tel: +211 912 178946

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