South Sudan

Fighting Worsens As Rebels Take Nasir, Wanding Towns


here sans-serif;”>Four ethnic Nuer residents were killed last Wednesday andstory sans-serif;”> Thursday in Awerial and Yirol West counties of Lakes State bysite geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%; background-color: #ffffff;”> government soldiers, Gurtong reported.

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The exact number of victims was unclear, but Gurtong said one Nuer native was killed in Golyar on Thursday and an officer and his two bodyguards were killed in Yirol West on Wednesday.

Today, a group of soldiers who defected from the 7th army division took over Nasir and Wanding towns.

Details from the upper Nile basin indicate that the defectors marched onto Maiwut County bordering Ethiopia, then proceeded to Ulang County, and then Nasir, all Upper Nile States controlled by SPLA’s 7th army Division.

At the same time, SPLA summoned all its commandos from various army divisions to gather in Juba before they could be ferried to Bor where Gen Peter Gadet threatens to attack government forces.

Gen Gadet and his fellow mutineer Maj Gen James Koang all responded to the announcement and swore to teach SPLA a lesson if they dare engage.

The Ugandan minister for information, Rose Namayanja, has just released a statement explaining the worsening situation in South Sudan where more Ugandan citizens are reported to be trapped amid tribal clashes.

Here is the minister’s full statement:

Whereas the situation in Juba is overly calm and secure with roads and the airspace to Uganda clear, fighting continues in Jonglei and Unity States, about 150Km north of Juba.

Meanwhile, Government of Uganda has put in place necessary arrangements to bring home those Ugandans in South Sudan who voluntarily want to return, a multifaceted approach of UPDF aircrafts and Government-hired buses.

Government is also closely liaising with United Nations Mission in Sothern Sudan (UNMISS) and relevant South Sudan authorities to facilitate evacuation of those Ugandans living in areas besieged by rebel forces in Jonglei.

While the situation in Juba is now relatively calm, the ministry of Foreign Affairs through its embassy in Juba continues to monitor the situation closely and is working with the authorities in South Sudan to ensure security of Ugandan citizens.

In the meantime, a high level delegation consisting of the Foreign Ministers of IGAD Member States (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda), accompanied by the African Union Commissioner for Peace and Security, and Special Envoy of the UN, on Saturday December 21, 2013, concluded a two-day fact-finding mission to Juba, South Sudan, during which they sought to secure an immediate de-escalation of tension in South Sudan and to facilitate a peaceful political dialogue among the protagonists in the current crisis.

At the end of their mission, a joint statement was issued between the IGAD Ministerial Delegation and the government of South Sudan in which the latter made a commitment to unconditional dialogue with opposition groups; cessation of hostilities; use of IGAD offices to reach out to such groups; a commitment to address the crisis politically and refrain from allowing it to become an ethnic conflict.

The IGAD Ministers also agreed on the IGAD to remain ceased of this matter, with the international community providing a supportive role.


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