Home | News    Thursday 12 January 2006

Sudan army threatens to oust SPLA from flashpoint town


Jan 11, 2006 (KHARTOUM)— Sudanese troops entered a town in eastern Sudan and threatened to evict ex-southern rebels in a move that could threaten a landmark year-old peace deal, rebel sources said.

Soldiers of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army train in the southern Sudanese town of Rumbek.

About 3,000 Sudanese soldiers backed by four tanks deployed to the town of Hamesh Koreb and ordered former rebels of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) to leave, they said.

"This is an act of aggression," SPLM/A spokesman Major General Elias Waya Nyipuocs said. "It is a violation of the peace agreement and it is very dangerous.

"They are heavily armed and reinforced with four tanks," he said by phone from Khartoum. "Their commander informed our commander that they were ordered to evict the SPLA troops.

"They have started digging trenches inside Hamesh Koreb at their defensive position about 200 meters (220 yards) from our base," Nyipuocs said, adding however that "their commander has said that they don’t want to fight and we have ordered our troops not to shoot a single bullet."

The eastern Sudanese rebel Beja Congress also accused the army of launching an attack on its camps in the Hamesh Koreb region, sparking clashes that left casualties.

"Troops backed by warplanes attacked our camps in Hamesh Koreb," near the border with Eritrea, the secretary general of the Beja Congress, Abdullah Mussa, said.

"Many victims" were left among rebel fighters who confronted the troops, said Mussa, without giving details.

The Beja Congress and another rebel group, the Free Lions, formed an alliance called the Eastern Front in 2005. They accuse the Khartoum government of marginalising their region.

"We will not give up Hamesh Koreb," said Mussa, charging Khartoum was aiming to sabotage peace talks scheduled to take place in Libya in late January.

Nyipuocs said SPLM/A chief of staff Lieutenant General Oyai Deng Ajack had given Khartoum’s troops 24 hours to withdraw or he would order all ex-rebel troops back to southern Sudan, a step that would deal a major blow to the peace deal.

Hamesh Koreb, about 500 kilometers (310 miles) northeast of Khartoum in Sudan’s Kassala province, was the largest town controlled by the SPLM/A in eastern Sudan during the 21-year north-south civil war that ended last January.

Under the terms of that agreement, the SPLM/A was to have withdrawn its troops from Hamesh Koreb by January 9, the first anniversary of the peace deal, unless it faced significant logistical problems and reported them.

Nyipuocs, also the chairman of the technical committee of the Sudan’s Joint Defence Board, said the ex-rebels had informed Khartoum and the United Nations the re-deployment would be delayed for "logistical and technical" reasons.

"We shall pull back to the south when we are ready," he said, adding that the SPLM/A was displeased that Khartoum’s troops had not met the same deadline to withdraw from towns in the south by Monday.

"The problem is that they are saying that we have delayed pulling out inline with the peace agreement, yet the government has not withdrawn from major towns in the south like Juba, Malakal and Wau," Nyipuocs said.

An influential policy group warned last week that simmering tensions in east Sudan were a "powderkeg" that could explode into a major war, damaging peace efforts in the western Darfur region and last year’s north-south peace deal.

The International Crisis Group called on the SPLM which is now part of a power-sharing government in Khartoum to urge Sudan’s leadership to negotiate in good faith with the Eastern Front.

It said war in the east was a near certainty unless the SPLM, which is allied with the Eastern Front, delayed its scheduled withdrawal this month from Sudan’s eastern Red Sea state.


Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article


The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.

Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis

The Nile Basin challenges and opportunities 2015-11-30 21:56:37 Between transboundary cooperation and national territorial transformations By Mohamed Yassin The Nile Basin is an extended unique and rich territory in the African continent, which extends over (...)

President Festus G. Mogae rekindles peace hopeful dividends for South Sudan 2015-11-28 07:33:06 By James Okuk Friday 27th November 2015 had marked a very important step forward on the path of peace in the Republic of South Sudan despite lagging behind the schedules in the last wasted three (...)

The Sudanese rebels’ national agenda is causing local harm 2015-11-26 07:46:17 By Hafiz Ismail Mohamed Sudan people's Liberation Movement- North (SPLM-N)'s insistence on negotiating with the government about national issues only – rather than giving priority to South (...)


Latest Press Releases

Deadly Public Order raid in Umm Dawm 2015-11-11 13:26:10 The Strategic Initiative for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA)Deadly Public Order Raid in Umm Dawm On the 14th of October, the Public Order Police (POP) carried out a sweep in Umm Dawm, an area (...)

S. Sudan civil society groups to the 28 states issue to constitutional body 2015-10-08 17:26:10 South Sudan Civil Society Organizations Submission on the Creation of 28 States in the Republic of South Sudan Press Statement For immediate Release 8th October 2015 Following the announcement (...)

Sudan Democracy First Group Statement on The International Day for Democracy 2015-10-01 22:18:58 22 September 2015 Sudan Democracy First Group (SDFG) commemorated on 15 September 2015 the International Day for Democracy, which the United Nations (UN) marks as a day to encourage governments (...)


Copyright © 2003-2015 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.