Home | News    Tuesday 5 June 2007

10 killed in clashes between SPLA, cattle raiders in South Sudan

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June 4, 2007 (KHARTOUM) — At least ten died in a clashed between Murle cattle raiders and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in Liria, central Equatoria State last week, the SPLA Spokesman Maj. Gen. Kuol Deim Kuol has reported on Monaday.

According to the SPLA spokeman Maj. Gen. Kuol, in the moring of the 2nd June 2007, it was reported to the SPLA forces based in Liria of the Central Equatoria State, that two children have been abducted in a village 15 minutes walk from Liria by a force of about 100 armed men. The SPLA 1st Company of the Battalion 141 was rushed to rescue the situation.

The Company clashed with the Raiders with followings results: the two children were rescued and returned to their village; three SPLA soldiers were killed in action; seven Raiders were killed. The dead bodies of the raiders were identified as that of the Murle Cattle Raiders; and three AK-47 rifles were captured by the SPLA.

The current peaceful disarmament of the local population in Pibor County is not achieving the designed objectives; instead the Murle Cattle Raiders have intensified the cattle raiding and abduction of children in Central Equatoria State, Ethiopia and the disarmed communities in Jongeli and Northern Upper Nile States.

(ST)

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  • 13 June 2007 11:35, by jacob M korok

    The recent press release made by the SPLA spokesman on alleged involvement of over one hundred Murle men in abduction of two kids at Liria payam has not only annoyed the entire community of the Murle, seriously offended by the statement, but also gave rise to a number of questions as to the truthfulness, the intents and timing of his remarks. The statement read out by the SPLA spokesman seems much to have been carefully designed in such a way as to meet the objective of widening the scope of hatred maintained by a group of certain individuals within neighbouring communities against the Murle in particular with the hope of winning an official support for their long standing campaign of mobilizing a huge military force capable of causing heavy damages on the community.

    The overall population of Pibor County has been and continues to be the target of several antagonistic activities spearheaded by a group of individuals who have chosen for themselves the task of reviving the notorious policies of isolation and prosecution pursued in the past against the Murle .Our men and women have for the last six months experienced unjustified acts of detention and torturing or killing in the hands of their own fellow countrymen whenever traveling outside their home county and yet the resolve by the community leadership to suppress the pains so as to defeat the ongoing attempts aiming at dragging the community into unnecessary confrontation with the people of South Sudan remains the guiding spirit for the victimized members of the community.

    The constant habit of pointing out fingers of accusation against the Murle for whatever crimes committed anywhere within the Sudan or across the borders does not take any of us by surprise so long as we know and understand that hyena’s natural status as a wild animal has been reversed and redefined by our own close neighbours as becoming human being belonging to the Murle community so that when it attacks the Paramount Chief of Murle is held accountable for the losses and the concept seems to have been widely sold out in a manner that a spokesperson is relieved of the burden of investigating into events before calling for a press conference to brief the public on who is behind the incidents.

    According to an investigation carried out recently by the community leadership across the Murle land to find out whether any of the youth were actually involved in the reported Liria clash, it was confirmed that none of the Murle has ever crossed to Lokoya land for any of the purposes spelt out by the Spokesman and it was then proved beyond any doubt that the story related by the big man was a mere fabrication intended to undermine the confidence placed by the Government of South Sudan on the local leadership regarding the issue of peaceful disarmament of the community

    It is worth stating that the great achievement scored by the local authorities at Pibor county in disarming a good number of Murle is unprecedented within Jonglei State and the Spokesman is strongly urged to make use of the records now available with the custodians at all levels of governments to supply his reports with credible information about the state of disarmament.

    While we strongly condemn all forms of violence directed against innocent children everywhere in the south, the Murle community demands that a thorough investigation into child abduction crimes is conducted to determine the actual causes of the phenomenon and recommend on how best it can be uprooted among the communities involved

    Considering the strength of language used by the SPLA Spokesman to bring about unjustified linkage between the Murle and what happen at Liria, the community felt that the General failed to go on air neither when the SPLA men at Jabora garrison managed to arrest five of the nine murders who set an ambush against a lorry carrying civilian passengers from Pibor killing one man and wounding another, nor when three of the SPLA soldiers from the Murle community were assassinated by well identified gunmen in Bor North area, was it because the Spokesman knew nothing about those incidents or because the victims were hynas and the murders are untouchables. Moreover, during last months Bor Dinka had raided Mundari and abducted seven children and many people had been killed. We have never seen press release or spokesman statement on the issue. We are not defending any bad acts committed by certain group but we want things weighed in the same level without favouritism. Even as the spokesman was telling the press about attacks which he claims the Murle launch on Ethiopian property, the commissioner who have just return from Gambela, Ethiopia reported that the Ethiopian knew nothing about the claims. In this regard we suggest that SPLA spokesman should set up a mechanism through which any information given must be verified before being channelled to media because without doing that he may loss his credibility.

    Despite all the humiliations suffered and experienced by the community, the Murle continues to maintain the believe that the Spokesman is a single source of information representing the entire SPLA public with all their tribal diversities and as such he is worthy of everybody’s respect and in return he is expected to treat all with equality and fairness without any preference of one group over the other. The community is fully aware of its obligations towards the movement and has every reason to be proud of the effective and expensive contributions made by The Murle beloved sons during the course of the SPLA struggle.

    The community hales the effort exerted by the government of South Sudan to achieve unity of all southerners through healing the wounds of our internal conflicts and build confidence among our people and help them put their hands together to fight the age old enemies of our communities including ignorance, disease and hunger. The mass joining of the former Pibor force into the SPLA ranks gives the message that their coming to the movement shall be of no return and the entire Murle land is now single constituency of the SPLA/M.

    In terms of development the community lack of basic needs to pursue the daily obligations such as roads, hospitals and schools in order to facilitate and promote living standard. To limit internal conflicts, roads between counties of Jonglie must be put into consideration.

    Murle Community leadership in South Sudan

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