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A destroyed classroom of a Catholic school in Abyei, a town at the center of the contested Abyei region along the border between Sudan and South Sudan. The school was looted and damaged in 2011 when soldiers and militias from the northern Republic of Sudan swept through the area, chasing out Dinka Ngok residents and stealing the furnishings to resell in towns to the north. Although Ethiopian peacekeepers today patrol the region, renewed attacks by northern-backed Misseriya militias in 2013 have many worried. The African Union has proposed a new peace plan, including a referendum to be held in October 2013, but it has been rejected by the Misseriya and Khartoum. The Catholic parish of Abyei, with support from Caritas South Sudan and other international church partners, has maintained its pastoral presence among the displaced and assisted them with food, shelter, and other relief supplies.