March 17, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – the rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) distanced itself from armed men who clashed this weekend with South Sudanese police in Yida camp for refugees located in Unity state’s Parieng county.
Radio Tamzuj reported that one policeman and two children were killed in clashes between South Sudanese police and JEM members led by Nimeiri Teiya in Yida camp, which is located near the South Kordofan border on Saturday.
JEM spokesperson Gibreel Adam Bilal dismissed claims his group had been involved in the incident and called on those responsible for the attack to be punished, further underlining JEM’s commitment to international humanitarian law on refugees.
He denied Nimeiri was a member of their movement, adding that last year he had applied to join JEM but his demand was rejected on the basis the lieutenant officer had previously been “banished from a revolutionary organisation”.
Radio Tamazuj, which provides extensive coverage of the situation in South Kordofan and refugees camps in South Sudan, said that Nimeiri belongs to the Angolo tribe from the Nuba Mountains.
In statements to Sudan Tribune, Parieng commissioner Majok Gadet denied the armed men who clashed with South Sudanese police were members of any Sudanese rebel group, describing their attack as a “banditry act”.
The JEM spokesperson also dismissed recent allegations that his group had a presence in neighbouring South Sudan.
Khartoum accuses Juba of harbouring JEM rebels, with Sudanese authorities pointing to a recent report prepared by UN experts on Darfur who said that the rebel group had different bases in South Sudan, including one in Unity with over 800 fighters.
On 8 and 12 March, Sudan and South Sudan signed two agreements to implement, among other things, security arrangements aimed at preventing a return to war, as well as cross-border attacks by rebel groups from both sides.