Nikki Haley, the United States ambassador to the United Nations, was rushed from a refugee camp in South Sudan after protests broke out and a humanitarian aid office was looted during her visit.
Haley, on a three-nation tour in Africa, was evacuated from the camp safely. Images shared by Radio Miraya, a media arm of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), showed mission peacekeepers controlling an angry crowd at Juba. A UN worker speaking with the Associated Press said tear gas was deployed after the mob turned to looting and destroying the office because Haley was unable to meet with them.
The ambassador did meet with some South Sudanese, sharing images on social media and vowing that their pain was a reminder that the world can’t look away and let”armed conflict be their only choice.”
The visit with the internally displaced was scheduled after Haley’s meeting with President Salva Kiir. While Haley welcomed the opportunity to meet with the South Sudanese leader and promised the nation’s people that the U.S. has not forgotten them, she was direct in remarks to and about Kiir’s leadership.
“We are disappointed by what we are seeing. This is not what we thought we were investing in,” said Ambassador Haley in a statement released by UNMISS. “What we thought we were investing in was a free, fair society where people could be safe and South Sudan is the opposite of that.”
Haley said her visit to South Sudan was a call to action and not more talk.
We are not waiting anymore we need to see a change and we need to see it right away,” she said. “We have lost trust in this government and we now need to regain that trust. The only way to regain that trust is through the actions of taking care of all of the people. President Kiir is the president of everyone, not just one tribe, not just one group.”
Kiir doesn’t care about his people, Haley said, appealing for more pressure on South Sudan before leaving a meeting with African leaders in Ethiopia.
Images: UNMISS/Radio Miraya, Nikki Haley