"We were afraid of each other"

Elizabeth Nyayuk and Elizabeth Deng have an extraordinary friendship: they belong to opposing groups and work across ethnic divides for peace in South Sudan. Photo: Mission 21

For years, a civil war raged in South Sudan. On paper, peace was sealed in the fall of 2018. But it is still a long way from reaching the population. People are still suffering from the brutal fighting between opposing ethnic groups. Countless people have lost their families. Their homes have been looted and burned down. Everyone is afraid of each other.

The churches are a neutral authority in this conflict. This is also true of the Presbyterian Church of Southern Sudan (PCOSS), which also played an important role in peace negotiations between the rebels and the government. People like Peter Gai, president of the PCOSS, have an important role model function in reuniting the people of South Sudan.

Also active in the peace and trauma work of the PCOSS are the two activists Elizabeth Nyayuk and Elizabeth Deng. They belong to opposing groups and yet they are friends. Together they help people - regardless of ethnicity - with relief supplies and psychological support. They also organize meetings for people from hostile groups. In this way, the two women also serve as important role models for peaceful coexistence and strengthen the trust and compassion of the people in South Sudan on both sides.

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Mission 21
Protestant Mission Basel

PO Box 270
Missionsstrasse 21
4009 Basel, Switzerland
Tel.: +41 (0)61 260 21 20

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IBAN: CH58 0900 0000 4072 6233 2
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Savings Bank Lörrach-Rheinfelden
BLZ: 683 500 48
IBAN: DE39 6835 0048 0001 0323 33
Account No. : 1032333

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