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Update: South Sudan rebel leader Gatluak Gai killed in mysterious circumstances


-* Update: SSLA rebels claim SPLA involved in Gatluak Gai’s murder

-* Update: South Sudan army (SPLA) deny involvement in Gatluak Gai’s killing

July 23, 2011 (JUBA) - A rebel leader in South Sudan’s Unity state was shot dead this morning in Koch county, only three days after he signed a peace deal with South Sudan army, the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA).

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Gatluak Gai (SMC)

Citizens and officials from the area told Sudan Tribune that Colonel Gatluak Gai was shot dead on Saturday morning along with some of his bodyguards after a group of people opened fire on him at Pakur where his forces have been temporarily assembled.

Phillip Aguer, the SPLA spokesperson confirmed Gatluak’s death, accusing the latter’s deputy, Marko Chuol Ruei for allegedly opening killing the former rebel leader after disagreement within the rebel camp.

"As you are aware, the government of Unity state entered into an agreement with Gatluak Gai and his forces leading to the signing of a peace agreement just three days ago. But two days later, differences began emerging within the rebel camps, whereby some soldiers led by Gatluak started disrespecting this peace deal," Aguer told Sudan Tribune by phone.

He added, "This morning, five senior commanders led by Marko Chuol Ruei went and tried to persuade their leader only for Gatluak’s loyal forces to fire at them. Immediately, there was exchange of fire between the two rebel camps and Gatluak plus three others were killed in the process."

Aguer, however, distanced the army’s involvement in the Saturday morning incident, saying the SPLA were assembled in one point simply waiting for the rebels, who days after the peace agreement, hinted on joining the southern army.

Col. Gatluak signed peace agreement this week with the SPLA which was facilitated by the Deputy Chief of General Staff, Lt. General Pieng Deng Majok, and was promised the rank of Lt. General in the SPLA.

Unity State government has been engaging in peace talks with Gai for the last six weeks. Gai defected from the SPLA and rebelled against South Sudan’s government after the announcement of election results in April last year.

Gai, is believed to have hoped to become a county commissioner - a position appointed by state governors - if independent candidate Angelina Teny beat the incumbent Taban Deng Gai to the gubernatorial seat in Bentiu.

After it was declared the Teny, the wife of South Sudan vice president Riek Machar, had lost Gai began a localised rebellion against the SPLA and the South Sudan government.

But a spokesman for the South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA), another rebel group active in Unity state, contradicted Aguer’s account of what happened, explaining that the rebel leader was lured to the peace process and attacked by the SPLA.

"Gatluak Gai was killed by the SPLA ... He signed a peace agreement and was ambushed by the same forces he signed the agreement with," Bol Gatkouth told AFP by phone.

"It was a way of luring him in so that they could catch him," he added.

Other sources in Unity state revealed that Gatluak expressed suspicion in the peace agreement with the SPLA when he was referred to as Colonel instead of Lt. General over radio announcement in Bentiu after the agreement contrary to the deal that confirmed him as Lt. General, a move that might have prompted the incidence against him.

Salva Kiir the president of South Sudan took the opportunity on July 9, when the country became independent as part of a 2005 North-South peace deal, to repeat his offer of an amnesty to all rebel groups in Africa’s 54th country.


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  • 24 July 2011 08:12, by George Bol

    The guy die for power greed. He dishonor the peace accord because he was announce colonel while promise Lt general. He rebel against SPLM because his running mate fail the electon in which he was promise to be commissioner in his county. Why people are so shallow like this?

    repondre message

    • 24 July 2011 08:24, by Dinka Dominated SPLA/M

      To be honest people. the poor man die because of some one family business. so if i where the relatives of Gatluak gai.I would sue or file a clame against Dr Riek machar family.

      But because Nuer people belived that Dr Riek machar is their superior person. the poor wife of mr gatluak gai and his childrens will not take any action against teny family.

      The poor guy was not intened to reblled but was force to do so. his childrens are gonna be in big terrible life without father and the childrens of Dr Riek machar and Angelina Riek will enjoyed their father and mother livings.
      the children of poor guy have not got chance to test their father ability to enjoy.
      what a shame?

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      • 24 July 2011 19:48, by Covert

        What is the point of repeating the same report over and over! 80% of the people in the South doesn’t even know this guy and I am one of the 80%, just get over it.

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      • 25 July 2011 07:00, by kulea

        Mr Dinka Dominated SPLM
        Dr Machar is the only one who rescuing the lives of our Nation without him nothing could makes Dinka a riches corrupted he rescuing your ass and the sametimes he let yr ass rich Dr Machar is formed Democratic leader who always supporting the human rights to be established in South Sudan

        how could he will be the one who contributed on the assassination of James Gatluak Gai kuach first of all Riek is one who was released him prison in the end of 2005 when Gatluak was arrested about two yrs in Bhar el Ghal by Idoite uless the former corruption Rebel leader in the World Mr Garang

        if you want to know the fact,we know the main killer by name Mr Dinka betrayed the Nepew of Westren Nuer Jikany the Governor of Unity State Mr Taban Hammed Hassen, Pieng Deng Majok and the chief of South Sudan’s Sultans those three idoites they gonna face the (ICC) as soon as possible,according to the human rights violaition by SPLM SPLA investigation will take place in the beginning of next

        Nuer they weren’t wait for another assassination we the Nuer in Diasporas we took the decission against the incident as well as United Nation sharing the information with us no matter what Mr Salva Kiir Dinka Cowboy is under fire

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      • 25 July 2011 07:59, by victor sani

        Dear Dinak Dominated SPLA/M

        All Dear Brother and sister .

        let us pray to God to forgive Gai Sins .

        and let us not put Blame as first Aganda his has died .

        we will not bring him back alife .we pray God such that rest him and put Him in his right hand.and forget about the blaming each other Like blaming Dr Riek Machar .
        we all know that they Killing came out from the same force because of misunderstand each other in their commending position .
        thanks God Rest Gai In peace .and forgive his sins .
        best regards .
        Victor Sani

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      • 25 July 2011 08:49, by Kur William

        My condolece to family of Gatluak Gai, I was really shock to hear this news although I did comdemned his rebellion some days ago because of the vague vision for his renegasion but I wasn`t wish him to die. So as matter this is how the things happpens forming the rebel with out good reasons to satisfy your loyalties beyond the reasonable doubt, at the end the confusion will emerege that can lead to devastating like this event.

        To Gorege Athor Deng, Tiger catde Yank and Abdhala Bagi yuii or whatever they names are, the death of Gatluak Gai is a clear message that they should learn" within their forces they need to convince their soldiers before they thinking to be intergration into SPLA conventional army and this decision need to be made quick as the time is running out for the good faith between all rebels in the South and government.

        I do know their rebellion as no clear vision like Gatluak Gai faction as well and to this stage if they are really men they have take this chance,the second pardon offered by president to them some weeks ago before the thing getting worse as everey one believes that their activities against the government likely look hard to be survive within Southeren Sudan territory after Juba administration had switch off all they accees gates to Khartoum.

        It seem that there is no room for them anymore to keep their aims on track unless to be intergrated into SPLA or join civilans live just within specific time,we the SPLA supporters we love peace and we are very keen to give it to people who want peace, whereas we also clutch the war in other hand and give it to people who desire for war, and SPLA has capacity to do it, Please the above mentioned names in second paragh go to Juba for peace and you will be welcome in peace (this is a message). Kur william live in Malou

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    • 24 July 2011 10:59, by Machine

      Good example to the rest.You either report back to the SPLA and accept peace for better resolution or you wait for your terminal day like Gai.

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    • 24 July 2011 18:10, by Mading Makuac

      We are sorry for death of our beloved brother which was caused
      by unknown politician.To those who kill people ,you’ve to stop
      that sickness you have.there is no need to kill someone who
      rebelled and come back ,he might have a reason why he rebelled
      and he has a right to live and right to explain his grieves.
      May you rest in peace General Ghai.

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    • 24 July 2011 18:32, by Kon Ajith Deng

      Comarde Gatluak was killed by Governor Taban Deng,because he rebels aganist him after election in Unity State,if he denies that why he says that he will not go to Juba till finished his purpose,

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    • 24 July 2011 19:32, by SSLA supporter

      Gorge bull

      Power do kill people just like it Killed William Nyoun Kerbino, Arok thon
      and your dwarf ,maniac and baldly militia leader called John Garang who died ike a dog when we shut his plane was shut down by the separatists while on his return from his stolen money in Uganda! it is good that John Garang died before he tasted the sweetness of this country we are enjoying now!!

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      • 26 July 2011 07:52, by Kur William

        Please you have to rethink or check for the word you wrote before you post it, will you trying to say that you had shotdown John Garang helicopter,if so as I did understood that is what you meant I can say you are fool, you know nothing about John Garang death just you want to create another ambiences amongst Southern Sudanese but likely you can afford it. Kur william live in Malou

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  • 24 July 2011 08:34, by Bush

    Even if the Sudan tribune keeps on repeating this same report thousands times here to cause confusions and instigation, the fact is this, Colonel Gatluak Gai is EKA (Enemy Killed in Action).

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  • 24 July 2011 08:42, by George Bol

    We got two militia leaders, so now let focus for the other remaing rebels and soon the the South will be free especially the citizens of Unity,JOnglei, and upper Nile.

    repondre message

    • 24 July 2011 08:56, by Dinka Dominated SPLA/M

      How about their children Mr Bol?

      Those poor militias groups where being blinfold by their master which is not even joint them in the struggled of power and foods.

      They are going to finsh one by one and their children dose not realist that their father where being used as a tool of family business.

      They poor children of poor militias have no chance to enjoyed what their father where fight for.

      At the end of the day. they childrens of dead nyagateen will stayed without father while the childrens of living once will enjoyed the power of their fathers as if their father where killed by Arab.

      Poor children of dead militia and childrens of militias waiting to die must take actions against the person who inspire their fathers to die for their family business while he is enjoyed his postion as vice president or president of north sudan.

      take childrens of poor militias because your father die for one familty business.

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      • 24 July 2011 09:35, by Malim

        Sudantribune is no longer an independence media website as we thought. The guy is siding with militia group who are creating chaos in the South. All the messages we wrote yesterday at Gatluak Gai page were deleted. Only those comments favoring the militia group were left. In conclusion it is supporting problem in South Sudan not peace. May almighty God bless those Arab who want to see South Sudan war.

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    • 24 July 2011 20:18, by SSLA supporter

      Gorge Bull

      this is the beginning of the end of southern Sudan, maybe you don’t know Nuer buddy but this is going to be your time to see Nuer in action!!

      repondre message

  • 24 July 2011 09:55, by Adam

    Unfortunately, the road of killing will never end in the South. This is very bad, whoever did it.

    This is not the way we solve problems.

    Adam Milawaki, Kwajok

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  • 24 July 2011 09:56, by Nhomlawda

    Do not bother us about killing of a militia leader.

    Militias went to the bush aimlessly to kill, loots and be killed.

    Gatluak Gai had received a reward for treachery against his nation and people.

    Gatluak Gai is a gone case. People of South Sudan just wanted to know Gatluak Gai, a militia leader who had been terrorizing civilians in Unity State, is no more. How he died is not really a serious issue to dwell on for two days.

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  • 24 July 2011 10:04, by Aleu

    Gatluak Gai.

    No one would like the death for human being however, Gai he has brought insecurity to himself until this days. Unity State’s communities have been facing too many situations created by him and Peter Gatdat Yaka. Yes, people begun to understood why that person is trying to put us in to another problem after the Southern Sudanese experiences two decades.

    I belief this is time for those people who have been misleading by such desperation persons always fighting for self-interest and fool others to follow them. The communities must tell those people who following new rebellion such as Peter Gatdat Yaka and George Athor Deng Dut not to be fool at the time they gained independence from the domination of Arab Northern Sudan dictatorship.

    Message to the people who have been fool by Peter Gadat Yaka and George Athor Deng, please stop following them because they are pretending that, they hate government and later they will come back and gain big positions while innocents young citizens just lost their lives for nothing. I will not mention those interests groups of people who did disasters in Southern Sudan but I would assume that, everyone knows the people who caused killing between Dinkas and Nuers for nothing supposedly, they should united people rather than causing a trouble in the region. Please every community must tell their to stay away from Peter Gatdat Yaka and George Athor Deng Dut. You want to have thinking on how the new nation will success so that, your grand children will have much better futures.

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  • 24 July 2011 10:26, by Sam.Eto

    Killed by Pagan Amum, Israeli Mossad and CIA. It was a threat to President Kiir that this is what is waiting for him if he failes to obey !

    Why do you thin Kiir used British and South African intelligence to protct him during the celebrations. Because he knew he could not trust pagan or the CIA.

    Tough luv ST

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    • 24 July 2011 10:56, by Marco A. Wek

      Sam Eto, while unfortunate the death of Gatluak which might have been committed by his inner circles, yet you have been whaling like a woman whose husband died when you are always quiet when your genocidal terrorist ghost Umar Hassan Al Bashir and his militias have been committing genocide in the Nuba Mountains.

      If you value human lives, why didn’t you show it to the Nuba people that are killed day and night not by Mosad, CIA or SPLA but by your genocidal childless uncle Omar Al Bashir. Be responsible and leave Southerners alone. In fact, we did separate because, we wanted some one like to be out in our lives. I respect some one like Jalaby and Mohamed Ali who stopped interfering into Southern affairs since July the 9th. Get lost in our lives and our affairs.

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    • 24 July 2011 11:07, by AdierCien

      In The Name Of The Trinity God Amen

      Marko A. Wek

      Love your enemy as you love yourself and don’t rejoice when your enemy is in problem. You may do it so while God planning on what should be done on you too.

      I salute you brethern there is nothing we can gain from celebrating negatively to the deceased rebel. Remember God do whatever you did to others either good or bad.
      My condolences to the family of late col. Gatluak Gai.

      May Almighty God Rest His Soul In Peace (RIP)

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      • 24 July 2011 11:24, by Marco A. Wek

        Thank you brother Adier Cein that is the spirit, we need unity and humanity in Southern Sudan as much as we needed our freedom from the oppressors.

        I hope your words will be comforting to the loved ones of Gatluak and the rest.

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        • 24 July 2011 12:12, by Dinka Dominated SPLA/M

          Marco A. Wek
          I am going to retaliate what you asked for. but i am going to give you some times. everythings should came at reasonable time.

          I know you have been following me by insulting and abuse me in this website but i ignore you which result to more and more to this dead heat.

          You must be from that clan who fully forgive the man who massacre poeple during the war.

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  • 24 July 2011 12:31, by AUGUSTINO DENG

    I know that all Nuer people are trying to exaggerate the killing of Gatluak Gai as a blame on the SPLA. If SPLA involved in the killing of Gatluak Gai, I do really supporting it very much. It is not rightful to be a leader when you killed people like what Riek Machar Teny did in the past. When Riek Machar Teny rebelled from the SPLA, he became a Vice President. When Paulino Matiip Nhial rebelled from the SPLA in 1984, he became now as a Deputy chief of Staff. There are so many more just to mention some few examples.

    By Augustino Deng. Jech la mer from Tharpam.

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    • 24 July 2011 12:59, by Bush


      You are right because many greedy people are now using rebellion as a means of acquiring positions that they couldn’t get through rightful means. How can one even believe that the peace agreement they signed will last since his son in law Peter Gadet is still in the bush. He himself was even the one trying to lure SPLA into something but God doesn’t like. He is simply EKA (Enemy Killed in Action).

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  • 24 July 2011 14:24, by Mi diit


    eventhough he chose a painful path of defending democracy in this nation by taking up arms, gatluak gai died a hero.

    he did not take up arms for nothing. he took up arms against dictatorship in south sudan in the same way john garang and salva kiir and riek machar took up arms against dictatorship and oppression in khartoum.

    if the 2010 elections were not rigged by the current leaders of south sudan, gatluak gai would not have taken up arms against the government. so he was fighting against injustice and dictatorship.

    a future leader in unity state will name schools and roads, etc, in memory of his good name. the man who fought for and died in defense of democracy in south sudan.

    HERO GATLUAK GAI, we will remember you forever and ever!

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    • 25 July 2011 12:17, by wudu emmanuel

      My consern is not who killed him,but why he was killed,bse he was greegy and deserve it.Congratulations to the killer.
      The next will be Athor and the others who rebelt against the GOSS.Though they call him a hero,but he died like a rat.Lets wish his soul in enternal peace although he was killer but was rewarded.

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  • 26 July 2011 06:00, by Odingo

    Cward Dinka
    Folks, LT. General Gatluak Gai was killed by Governor Taban Deng Gai, LT. General Pieng Deng Majock. They are the one who killed General Gatluak Gai in cold blood.

    I believe that Nuer Warriors will make a revenge of their brother who was killed in cold by Cowardic Dinka.

    Over all, Taban Deng Gai killed his own brother in cold blood through the order of cowardic Dinka.

    repondre message

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