Perpetrators of serious human rights violations, committed during the armed conflict, continued to enjoy impunity. Despite a ceasefire and peace agreement, civilians were killed in sporadic clashes between government forces and armed groups. Parties to the conflict obstructed humanitarian access and at least three aid workers were killed in crossfire. Millions of people faced food insecurity and there was a severe lack of medical care. Children were forcibly recruited as child soldiers and conflict-related sexual violence was pervasive. Security agencies arbitrarily arrested and detained perceived government opponents and critics, including journalists, and freedoms of expression and assembly were severely restricted. After two years of denial by government actors, a UN Panel concluded in 2019 that it was “highly probable” two outspoken critics of the government were abducted in Kenya and extrajudicially executed in South Sudan in 2017. There were 11 state executions. Violence against women and girls remained widespread.
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