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Dissident general says Unity state oil production has stopped

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December 26, 2013 (BENTIU) - The commander of the South Sudanese army (SPLA) in Unity state who defected over the weekend claimed on Thursday that oil production has been halted due to a lack of staff.

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Commander of the SPLA’s fourth division in Unity state, Maj. Gen. James Koang Chuol, on 25 February 2013 (ST)

James Koang Chuol, who took control of the army’s fourth division in Unity state on Saturday, told Sudan Tribune that he had not ordered the shutdown, saying the decision was taken by oil technicians who were evacuated from the area on 25 December.

The UN says that over 1,000 people are believed to have been killed in the fighting. Last week, 16 oil workers were killed by their colleagues in a revenge attack for the alleged ethnic targeting of people in the capital, Juba.

“We are not the one to stop the oil”, said Koang, adding that the oil belonged to the South Sudanese people.

The South Sudan government also confirmed that work on Unity state’s oil fields had been halted temporarily, but denied reports that the area was under the control of rebels allied to former vice-president Riek Machar.

“Work on Unity oil fields has temporary stopped”, information minister Michael Makuei said, admitting that rebel forces were in control of the Thar Jath oil fields.

Machar, who is leading the rebellions in Unity, Jonglei and Upper Nile states, said on 23 December that forces under his command will divert oil revenues accrued from the country’s oil wells.

Machar denies plotting to overthrow president Salva Kiir, but says he was forced to flee Juba in the aftermath of fighting between members of the presidential guards. He told Sudan Tribune that he intended to stop oil revenue remittances reaching the government in Juba.

“There is no administration in the country so the oil money cannot be taken by one side, we are not longer on the side of Kiir; we have already decided [to] break away from his administration”, Koang said, adding that the oil money should be administered by the international community until the conflict is resolved.

Koang, who declared himself Unity state’s new governor on Saturday, said the conflict in South Sudan was not about money, explaining the reason for the defection of the army in Unity state, where most of the population is from the Nuer ethnic group, was sparked by anger over reports of mass killings of civilians from their community in Juba.

Since reports emerged of Nuer being targeted in the capital, revenge attacks have been carried out against Dinka civilians in other parts of South Sudan. Two peacekeepers were killed with around 20 Dinka civilians in an attack on the UN base in Akobo, in the far east of Jonglei state last week.

Another Nuer General, Peter Gadet Yaak, defected on 18 December, taking control of Jonglei’s capital, Bor, for several days until it was eventually reclaimed by government forces on 24 December

Machar has also claimed to be in control of Upper Nile state, South Sudan’s second largest oil-producer, where fierce fighting has been reported in Malakal, with both sides claiming to be in control of the state capital.

(ST)

Ex-VP Machar says forces will divert oil revenues from Juba

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  • 27 December 2013 04:59, by Gogrialboys

    One thing that I failed to understand from my cousins Nuers, is the way they used the event in Juba to slaughter Dinka across their land. If Dinka were targetting as it was allege, why there is no killing of Nuers across Dinkaland or states like what is happening in Nuerland? Monyjang are human being that value the life, unlike Nuers who always think that they can slaughter Dinka to get to power.

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  • 27 December 2013 08:24, by Mapuor

    Coup attempt occurred on 15th Dec 2013 in Juba and presidential guards foiled it.Riek Macar fled Juba and asked his tribes men to kill Dinkas be they civilians or soldiers,the result was massacres in Nasir,Akobo,Ulang,Maiwut,Bentiu,Rubkona and Tharjath oil fields in Jikeny and Jagay areas.Civil war broke out resulting to stoppage of oil flow in Tharjath.Why demand for release of coup plotter

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    • 27 December 2013 08:29, by Mapuor

      All coup plotters that are in the prison will never live to make another coup.Most of them killed many innocent people during the war.Majak Agot killed Lokurnyang,Giir killed Dr Juac together with two soldiers from Lakes and many more,Oyai killed innocent Chollo in Pashoda battalion.They must pay for more than 1000 lives that were lost in the current thwarted coup in Juba and else where

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  • 27 December 2013 12:27, by Konkooc

    All oil field are in Dinka land, like Maluth County in Upper Nile State the Dinka county will not and ever be touched by hungry lazy nuer. Maluth/Paloch oil field produce 85% of crude oil Dar blend in block 3 and 7. Parieng in Unity state where oil is produced too is a Dinka land. o
    only tharjath belong to nuer

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    • 27 December 2013 12:58, by Konkooc

      900 million oil reserve is found in Dinka land Maluth County while 250 million half of it in tharjath nuer area and half of it in Parieng Dinka land. nuer only have 125 milliom barrels oil reserve in tharjath while Dinka land have 1025 million barrels oil reserve in Dinka land.

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      • 27 December 2013 17:31, by Majongdit

        Konkooc,
        Yes tell them bro...

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  • 27 December 2013 14:18, by dude

    YOU DINKA ARE JUST CLOWNING ON SUDANTRIBUNE. YOU ARE NOT REALLY THINKING. YOU ARE SELFISH. NOT WILLIING TO ACCEPT ANYTHING BECAUSE YOUR BEILEVES ARE BASED IN ILLUSION AND UNFOUNDEDE LIES THAT WILL DRAG YOU INTO THE PIT. SELFISHNESS WILL NOT WORK IF YOUR COMMENTS ARE UNBELIEVEABLLY MORE LIKELY RELATED TO GORRILAS AND HYENAS.

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  • 27 December 2013 15:28, by Northern Sudanese

    stupid south sudanese , how dare you stop the flow of oil :/ where the hell is SPLA when you need them???

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  • 27 December 2013 17:28, by Majongdit

    Kim Deng,
    Why do you keep calling Dinka slaves? Every nation in the world knows that Dinka have never sided or defected to Arabs even in one day.

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    • 27 December 2013 21:08, by deng

      Kim Deng,
      Do you know how we call someone who repeated the same thing over and over again? we call them abeel. Repeating Dinka slaves over and over again made you foolish and the degrees of your foolishness are differ. Thanks to your fast legs that let you touch the bees and run what a shame? Salva Kiir is a good president but if it was someone else like the other dinkas I know Nuers would suffer

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