South Sudan

SPLA prepares to take Machar’s Pagak stronghold


A SPLA soldier stands in front of a vehicle in Juba December 20, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

South Sudanese government forces clashed with armed Mundari youths near Juba at the start of the week.

Clashes, according to Radio Tamazuj, started Monday near Khor Jamus and lasted for a couple of hours resulting in three casualties from the SPLA side.

SPLA headquarters was forced to send battle tanks injuring at least six Mundari youth before they retreated northward behind Jebel Ladu.

In Upper Nile State, Gen. Stephen Buai, commander of SPLA Division One (Jamus) has accused government militias and some security agents of carrying out targeted ethnic killings of civilians in Renk town.

Notable among them are the dangerous ‘white army’ recruited from the area, oil protection unit and security agents.

Addressing a crowd in Renk, the SPLA major-general dismissed reports that the SPLA forces were involved in the killings and crimes committed in the town.

Buai also accused some elements of seizing houses in Renk by force.

The army commander pointed out that military forces in Renk will be disarmed and that whoever starts random shooting in the town will be held accountable.

In a separate context, he also claimed that the SPLA forces are preparing to attack the SPLA-IO rebel stronghold in Pagak area near the border with Ethiopia after the end of the rainy season.

In Mundri East County, SPLA reportedly beat civilians and looted shops killing one person.

Margret Fozia Emmanuel, Member of Parliament representing Mundri East in the Western Equatoria Assembly, told the radio that schools and markets are closed after lootings.

“There is an incident of a vehicle which was looted [in Lozu Payam], the driver was killed by unknown gunmen and a civilian from the area also was shot,” she said.

“Shops were looted, people were beaten, the deputy executive officer of the payam was beaten in presence of the big man of the army, by one of the army. I think this is unbecoming. Because the army is where the citizens should go to get safety, but if the army is the one which is now beating civilians I think it is unbecoming.”

She said that Mundri East MPs visited the deputy governor on Monday to complain about the incident and to complain about the beating of a state official in the presence of an SPLA officer.


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