South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit has declared a unilateral ceasefire across the country after hundreds lost their lives in weekend fighting.
President Kiir who is the Commander in Chief has ordered the SPLA and all other regular forces not to shoot at any SPLA-IO soldier who has surrendered.
According to National Courier, the order was read out by information minister Michael Makuei on SSBC declaring ceasefire effective from 1800hrs Juba time.
“All the Commanders of these forces are hereby directed to cease any hostility and abide by this order, control their forces and protect the civil population and their property,” part of the order quoted by Eye Radio reads.
“All the Commanders of these forces are directed to control their forces and ensure protection of any ethnic group that may be targeted by the elements within their forces and any SPLA-IO who surrenders to the SPLA must be protected.”
It added: “All the Commanders deployed at the checkpoints within Juba city, shall reduce and limit such checkpoints to only essential and important installations.”
The order says any soldier found on the street or looting civilian property will be arrested.
The order further warns any soldier or officer that will resist arrest will be “shot at”.
The SPLA Chief of General Staff, Paul Malong, has just ordered the army to return to their barracks with immediate effect.
Juba International Airport to be opened tomorrow according to Ateny Wek, Kiir’s spokesperson, told Talk of Juba.
Fighting resumed in the capital early Monday morning with sporadic fire around Jebel area.
Shots were fired at Nyakuron and towards the Blue House (National Security) with SPLA evacuating civilians caught in crossfire to safety.
However, in some areas SPLA Water tankers has been driving in the neighbourhoods supplying people with water.
The National Courier reported that SPLA has destroyed a half finished high rise building on Bilpham Road that was under construction by the SPLA Military Production Unit.
It was occupied by rebel forces who have been ambushing troops moving along the road inflicting heavy casualties on the SPLA yesterday and today.
An armoured brigade garrisoned nearby brought the building down with tank fire killing over 150 rebels according to sources who took part in the operation.
Meanwhile, a convoy of civilians fleeing fighting headed to Nimule has come under attack by unknown group of armed people.
Several civilians are feared dead.
The humanitarian situation is dire with many people running out of food and drinking water.