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South Sudan’s presidential guards clash in Juba

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December 16, 2013 (JUBA) – Military clashes have occurred between the presidential guards of South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir in the capital, Juba.

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South Sudanese military parade during a ceremony South Sudan’s first Independence day on July 9, 2012 in Juba, South Sudan. (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

The clashes occurred from about 10pm on Sunday evening in the old military barracks inside the capital and continued intensively for about one hour before one group was expelled.

Sporadic gunfire rocked the new nation’s capital over night sending residents into a state of panic as movements were controlled by the military.

The state-owned SSTV is currently off air while Juba airport remains closed. Juba residents also claim they have found it hard to make telephone calls since the morning.

Military sources said the clashes between the Tiger special force occurred when one group predominantly of the Nuer ethnic group was suspicious of the deployment of another predominantly from the Dinka tribe. An arguments between the two is believed to have led to the deadly clashes.

The source said the group predominantly of Nuer have expelled their colleagues predominantly of Dinka, composed mostly of those who were recently graduated by president Salva Kiir at Luri bridge and deployed at the old military barracks.

The situation is now calm, but tense amidst fears that it may escalate as soldiers have been deploying in various strategic locations. No casualties have been reported so far.

Eyewitnesses told Sudan Tribune that the fighting was fierce as those chased out of the barracks withdrew into the rest of the city.

ARMY URGES CALM

The South Sudan’s army, meanwhile, warned residents of the capital, Juba, to remain in their homes after gun shoots and explosions were heard overnight.

"We request people to remains in their residences until we establish the actual cause of the shootings", Phillip Aguer, the SPLA’s spokesperson told Sudan Tribune.

The army, Aguer said, regrets the unfortunate incident which has left the Juba population in a state of panic, but gave no further details on casualties involved.

UN, US MISSION CONCERNED

The United Nations Mission in South Sudan expressed deep concerns over the incident that broke out in the country’s capital, calling for calm among the parties involved.

"As the Special Representative of the Secretary General, I urge all parties in the fighting to cease hostilities immediately and exercise restraint. I have been in touch regularly with the key leaders, including at the highest levels to call for calm," Hilde Johnson said in a statement on Monday.

UNMISS will continue to monitor events closely and provide updates as developments warrant, she added.

Meanwhile, the United States embassy in Juba advised its citizens in the country to exercise extra caution at all times.

"The U.S. Embassy will continue to closely monitor the security environment in South Sudan, with particular attention to Juba city and its immediate surroundings, and will advise U.S. citizens further if the security situation changes", it said in a statement.

In 2006, a similar incident occurred when part of the military mutinied over unpaid salaries prompting fierce battle between forces loyal to the establishment and the mutineers at a military barracks at Gumbo, a few kilometers out of Juba town.

(ST)

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  • 16 December 2013 06:16, by dude

    We told you Fucking gogrials not to mess with the country. This country is for all the tribes not for gogrial alone. Salva Kiir must leave because he cannot deliver services to our people of South Sudan. It not a good idea to fight (NAATH NUER); otherwise you will end up getting very depressed AND KILLED. we need a new leader for all the tribes.

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    • 16 December 2013 06:29, by Rommel

      dude:
      Don’t get excited, there will be no imposition of a tribal leader by anybody. We’ve gone through this before, and it always fails, so stop day dreaming.

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      • 16 December 2013 06:38, by dude

        Rommel my brother, do you really thing that I am for tribalism. No I am not. I am just saying the facts. We south Sudanese are one family and nothing more. But we do not need salva Kiir because we wasted so much time to build the country. we need a new leader for all the tribes.

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        • 16 December 2013 06:48, by dude

          The presidential guards were ordered to go and catch Dr.Riek Machar. But they ended up in a bad situation.

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          • 16 December 2013 07:00, by Rommel

            dude:
            That doesn’t make any sense! Why would Presidential guards be ordered to leave their posts to go out and arrest somebody when regular soldiers can already do that!? Do you have any evidence for your claims!?

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        • 17 December 2013 06:10, by Ahmed Chol

          How does Kuol Manyang feels now? Why was he rejected in 2009 by Gokrial thugs as Defense Ministers and they now give him the position? Kuol is foolish indeed!

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    • 16 December 2013 07:18, by Chol A.

      @Dude it already clear and I always said your drum of war have been heard, Kiir is now run out of patient but I wonder why Dr R splitter surrender to UN compound in jub? The justic for those he kill 1991 had began R splitter will not escape trail this time. There is no room left for him now he will be caught soon like his militia men your nyagat believe in what you seen and you see it and heard it turn nasty in juba stay turn.

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      • 16 December 2013 08:12, by Mi diit

        Ahahahaaa....I have been telling you that incompetent Kiir will NEVER celebrate Christmas Day as the leader. Now it is up to you to believe me. Kiir talked tough like Gaddafi or Hosni Mubarak, but today feels like a fish thrown out of the water.The main presidential guards have not yet joined the fight. The barrack is already captured and Kiir’s group are fighting in Bilpam to exit from Juba.

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        • 16 December 2013 08:18, by Mi diit

          Incompetent Kiir is now in hiding after starting the fight, ordering his soldiers to arrest Dr. Riek Machar. The so-called National Liberation Council is cancelled for EVER under Kiir. All of them are in hiding, crying and crying. The worst is yet to come for this primitive dictator. Down, down, Salva Kiir!

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          • 16 December 2013 11:17, by Msudi

            Midiit,
            This is what many of us were telling Dinka Dominated Shit yesterday. Before I log off from and worse happened. Let see what rest day unvails

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      • 16 December 2013 10:32, by Bentiu son

        Dear South Sudanese people stay calm n confidence,our gallant forces had expelled the twice the military offensives launched against our forces by Salva Kiir Guelweng militias term as Presidential guards led by killer Marial Cinour.We badly defeated them with many casualties.Now are forces had recently overrun Giada Jenubia n Newsite’s military barracks. The fight is going on at Bilpam Military HQ

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    • 16 December 2013 10:19, by Pinyin Gatkuoth

      This war it will end when Kiir run away to Uganda, If Poor President kirr still here in this country, war will continouse till the war will kill childern.

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  • 16 December 2013 06:24, by Rommel

    Salva Kiir only recently started getting a small handful of these Dinka Presidential guards [still a minority] while each and every single militia leader and erstwhile ally of Khartoum returned in 2004-6 with their own force (s), their own body guards, wholly from their own tribe. Did he really think he had enough Dinka guards to defend him? The fool slept.

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    • 16 December 2013 06:57, by Majongdit

      Dude,
      This reporter is just cheating. These are the kind of reporters that should go scrutiny. You ask your brother in Juba to tell you the fact. Riek and Pagan are now in the US embassy. The Nuer militias, not the Nuer tribe have been expelled last night. Some clearance is still ongoing of those pro Riek militias.

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      • 16 December 2013 07:14, by dude

        Yes Riek is in American embasy, but Salva Kiir has left the country for Uganda

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  • 16 December 2013 07:07, by Joseph Canada

    I said it before!! I said it before!!.. The tribal leadership of the president training his own brothers is a smoke of recklessness and Irresponsibility of this mad man called Kiir!! His Decrees are coming back to haunt him! Other Southern nationals want to build the nation while these tribes are spooning the name of the new nation with a lot of dreams and hopes. South Sudanese have to stand up!!

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  • 16 December 2013 07:12, by Dinka-Defender-General

    My people, my people. Calm down. This is not a right thing to do. Please don’t fight in selfish fighting. We, the South needs to unite and stay together. Long live South, Long Spla/Splm

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  • 16 December 2013 07:31, by daniell

    That is exactly what happen when Hoith Mai is given another position not minister of defense.Hoith Mai is a man who has an influence to national army.He has the capacity to control and direct the army to nationalism.It is fearsome,horrified and predictable that rss will be in the state of armegoden and unless the God of rss open eyes so wide to see our vices and virtues so that we united as one.

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  • 16 December 2013 07:31, by marie

    This is the beginning of disintegration of South Sudan to three or four countries. I think that would be the best solution to the tribal issue in that part of the World. Equatoria should be a country, Warrap, lakes and Northern Bahr El Ghazal a country. Upper Nile and Unity a country then Jonglei a country. This would solve all the problems in the country.

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  • 16 December 2013 10:30, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

    Shit, shit and shit the Nuer community and those loyal to defected Riak Machar, you are failed in your plans.
    am like my president Kiir with his Republican guards for the hard job they did against comrade Kiir regime.

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    • 16 December 2013 10:37, by Bentiu son

      Dear South Sudanese people stay calm n confidence,our gallant forces had expelled the twice the military offensives launched against our forces by Salva Kiir Guelweng militias term as Presidential guards led by killer Marial Cinour.We badly defeated them with many casualties.Now are forces had recently overrun Giada Jenubia n Newsite’s military barracks. The fight is going on at Bilpam Military HQ

      repondre message

      • 16 December 2013 11:00, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

        Bentiu Son
        there is no reinforcement from president side to presidentials guard force.
        nothing call gielweng is has coming in for attack. Nuer is already failed in its planed.

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  • 16 December 2013 10:41, by Kenyang

    Again, Sudantribune and its associates can preach and do whatever they want but at the end the hated man, Dr. Riek Machar can’t have enough ballots or bullets to be president.

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