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U.N. struggling to deliver food aid in South Sudan as rains cut off vast areas

People watch as a plane air drops U.N's World Food Programme (WFP) food aid near the town of Katdalok, in Jonglei State of South Sudan July 30, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Dumo

KATDALOK, South Sudan (Reuters) – The U.N. World Food Programme has been forced to carry out air drops of food aid across South Sudan as the rainy season makes about 70 percent of the country inaccessible, a regional head of logistics for WFP said on Monday.

In addition to the inaccessible terrain, aid groups also have to contend with being targeted by armed groups operating in South Sudan. Both rebels and government forces have been accused of targeting humanitarian workers and sometimes blocking access to relief and hijacking food and other aid.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed in a war initially fought between troops loyal to President Salva Kiir against rebels under former vice president Riek Machar. The violence has spread throughout the country and has often been fought along ethnic lines.

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