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S. Sudan rebels dismiss accusations of atrocities in Malakal


February 21, 2014 (JUBA/ADDIS ABABA) - South Sudanese rebels have dismissed accusations by the government alleging that they committed atrocities after recapturing the strategic capital of the oil-rich state of Upper Nile.

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Rebel fighters greet one another at a rebel camp in South Sudan’s Jonglei state on 1 February 2014 (Photo: Reuters/Goran Tomasevic)

Rebels on Tuesday recaptured Malakal when they dislodged government troops from the town, located 497km north-east of the capital, Juba.

Although the government initially denied the rebels’ claims, it publicly admitted on Friday for the first time that the strategic town had actually been recaptured by opposition forces and that the latter remained in full control.

The government, however, accused the rebels of allegedly violating the cessation of hostilities agreement and committing atrocities after taking full control of the area.

President Salva Kiir’s spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny, on Friday said government forces were not driven far away, further accusing the international community of "ignoring" alleged atrocities committed by the rebels.

"Atrocities are happening on a daily basis and the international community is quiet about this," he said, adding "When Riek’s [Machar] forces attack towns and other areas, it’s doomsday for those who don’t belong to his [Nuer] ethnic group."

Meanwhile, the rebels have dismissed any threats by the government and foreign forces to retake the strategic oil-rich town of Malakal, saying soldiers loyal to President Kiir fled the town heading to counties far away from Malakal.

"Salva Kiir’s forces are nowhere to be found around Malakal. They were kicked out from the town since Tuesday, dispersed in disarray and pursued into bushes heading to the southern counties", said Machar’s spokesperson, James Gatdet Dak.

He also denied allegations by the president’s spokesperson that the rebels had committed atrocities after recapturing Malakal on Tuesday.

"No, that is not true. To the contrary, it was Salva Kiir’s soldiers who carried out door-to-door search and mass murder of innocent civilians in Malakal town similar to the well documented massacres they committed in Juba", Dak said.

He said the information gathered by the “pro-democracy forces” after taking full control of the town indicated “horrible stories” of hundreds of people including elderly, women and children mainly from Nuer, Shilluk and Dinka Bor ethnicities, murdered simply because they were not either loyal to Kiir or belonged to his ethnic group.

Dak further claimed that the government and its allied Ugandan troops was on record when it violated the cessation of hostilities agreement in Jonglei state hours after signing it in Addis Ababa, adding that the rebels were occasionally fighting only in self-defence.

“Salva Kiir’s soldiers and their foreign allies have been violating the agreement from day one. They have been continuously attacking the positions of our troops in violation of the cessation of hostilities agreement,” he told Sudan Tribune.

“Our forces have been either withdrawing from their attacked positions in order to avoid further clashes or in some instances they fought back in self-defence as in the case of Malakal,” stressed Machar’s publicist.

“As you can see it is the government which has now publicly threatened to retake Malakal by dreaming of launching another offensive in flagrant violation of the agreement," he added.

He said the rebel forces “will continue to respect the cessation of hostilities agreement, but would, however, exercise the right to self-defence wherever and whenever they come under unprovoked attacks.”


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  • 22 February 2014 08:03, by mathem jech amer

    Riel lies, how can traitors be attacked first while the town is controlled by governemnt forces. Now they are the one coming from outside Malakal and attack the town, can it be governemnt forces attacking them first, but anyway you are lacking because the same Kiir you don’t want still helps you otherwise you had been dislodged from your hideouts

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    • 22 February 2014 08:27, by Kiir

      Many people will suffer from hand of Mrs. Akiir Museveni, Akiir soldiers thought that rebel will fight them with sticks and spears does why they uses to attack the rebel in their positions in Anakdiar and Canal.
      Akiir don’t blame Machar of death of your GEM&Ugandan troop mercenaries; it is result of your plans. Take your beer bandit!!!!!

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      • 22 February 2014 10:09, by LL Reuben

        Some of these absurd claims are utterly foolish and reveal how much substance some have in their brains. JEM are Sudan’s (North) rebels and last year N. Sudan and S. signed an agreement which a better example is the reason the oil is flowing. A no-brainer-question is: if JEM was supporting RSS in her fights against its rebels (Riek’s Nuer) why is Sudan then neutral?...

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        • 22 February 2014 10:11, by LL Reuben

          while their enemy is aiding their former enemy. What benefit is it to JEM to fight for RSS while they’ve not liberated their region in their fight against Sudan’s government? Would their participation not put them on the disadvantage side in their front with SAF? Stay foolish, ignorant but be willing to rip obvious consequences as always.

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          • 22 February 2014 10:56, by Tutbol

            LL Reuben,
            These are ploys being crafted by the Nuers Resistant Movement (NRM, image makers from the WEST! Riek Machar named his armed rebellion a week ago a *Resistant movement* but the name is compatible with what his armed rebellion image makers think, will get his movement anywhere & so they resorted to their so-called SPLA/M-in opposition something that is more absurder than (NRM)!

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            • 22 February 2014 11:04, by Tutbol

              Riek Machar supporters of his armed rebellion in the US or Europe are desperately shopping for anyone, just anyone, even evil to a meat onto Riek Machar’s armed rebellion to save their own faces & ar*ses. They demanded that the group of (7) seven be allowed into the negotiation & to possibly be willing to cover Riek Machar’s & the US-Europeans armed rebellion!

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              • 22 February 2014 11:15, by Tutbol

                And to give credence to Riek Machar & his US handlers that their armed rebellion is in the interests of all S Sudanese communities, instead the Group of (7) seven chose their own ego, to be a *third entity*! and so Mr. Riek Machar & US-Europeans handlers, went back to demand the release of the Pagan Amum, the US golden boy & his Group of (4) four, so that the negotiations can continue!

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                • 22 February 2014 11:25, by Tutbol

                  l don’t think the of S Sudan, would fool enough to be dictated by the criminals against the interests of the S Sudanese peoples. Riek Machar armed rebellion is just using the same *play book, the CIA-MI6 trained Al Qada armed rebels in Syria* They are being armed by the US, Qatar, Saudia Arabiya. In S Sudan though, the US & Europeans have brought their evil game game a country & its peoples...

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                  • 22 February 2014 11:27, by Tutbol

                    who don’t buy any country’s evil intrigues.

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                  • 22 February 2014 14:29, by Hardlinner

                    Riek should name his jungle army the " primitive rebels for killing and looting, prkl". If it won’t because of brainless primitve nuers, would have backed this mad dog/riek who value his quest for leadership above human life and suffering. I certainly question riek intellectual ability given his past and current history. If nuer lack leaders, why don’t they pick silver back gorilla as their leader

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                • 22 February 2014 11:34, by omoni jr.

                  NRM is party for your godfather M7 ,you forgot your uncle party? The LRA/M. and NRA/M parties for Uganda.

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                  • 22 February 2014 11:41, by omoni jr.

                    YOUR hatred toward Nuer is the one turning this nation into the bloodbath and blood-shower room. You are all vampires,but you Dinka tend to crt a lot when Nuer revenged and hit you hard.And you keep talking about Reik machar everyday,and at the same moment you murdered innocent Nuer who got nothing to do with Reik machar policking games.

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            • 22 February 2014 11:30, by Tutbol

              These are ploys being crafted by the Nuers Resistant Movement (NRM) IMAGE MAKERS from the WEST! Riek Machar named his armed rebellion a week ago a *Resistant movement* but the name IS NOT compatible.

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        • 22 February 2014 12:14, by Mapuor

          Kiir will rule for life come what may.Malakal is going to be retaken soon.Nuers will keep on flees to Ethiopia as mighty Dinka warriors are ready to flush them out of South Sudan.Nuer came to South Sudan from Ethiopia in 16th century and must be chased back at any cost.Panda Oyee our oil Oyeee our country Oyee.Foreigners must leave Malakal.Nuer of Gajaak attack Malakal all the way from Itang.

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          • 22 February 2014 12:47, by Tutbol

            Your bluffings & language of promoting your Bhar el Gazelle rule over S Sudan, isn’t helping. If your projection is what the President is using! then you can ask your, Salva Kiir to resign as just as the Nuer community wants. What i know so far, Agar Dinka, would not be allowed to manned the Dinka, SPLM/A coded radios, but will be forced to fight in the front lines like every body else.

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            • 22 February 2014 12:56, by Tutbol

              We are at war, in a war that is being supported by the Nuers who played little role in our country’s independence, but the Nuers are being used by the juus, the US & the UK. Our peoples worship, the juus, the UK & the US. When they don’t even know that these countries are the most evilest of all evil peoples in the world plus their Arabs countries in the ’gulf states’.

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              • 22 February 2014 14:15, by Hardlinner

                Tutbol, the fight against primitive nuer have nothing to do with leadership but protection of human lives, property and above all protecting voice of reason. Imagine if kiir was the one launching rebellion, which numb nut dinka men would join him knowing that there are other ways of gettting leadership. I think these nuer primitive would been better off under bashir government.

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              • 22 February 2014 14:57, by Mapuor

                Yaa Nyagaat, during the long war,all Agar intellectuals fought countless battles.Yeah some of them did staff work as it was the case with other Dinkas who were fighting in the SPLA and the roles were changed yaa Nyagaat.This war will surely end in Nuer militia defeat,take it from me.Nuer militias will eventually surrender and no more illiterate generals this time.You will go to Luaks

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                • 22 February 2014 15:05, by Mapuor

                  This country will nevr be ruled by Nyagaats come what may.Nuer militias are known for corruption when in goverment and looting and killing of innocent Dinkas,Chollo,Murle,Maban and Anyuaks.Who will vote for you Nyagaat.Why promote illiterates to high military ranks if you ever have semblance of modernity.Those are things that fit well in neolithic age.Sons of whores.

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      • 22 February 2014 13:58, by Hardlinner

        What are we deal with here, some sort of nuer kids or what. Do these nuer primitives think they can lie to grown up people. If government was killing the mentioned people, why then did they same people went to town when government it took it from the rebels?. In fact the incident where dinka and shilluk join hands in attacking nuer tell the whole story. Dinka and shilluk are on government side.

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  • 22 February 2014 19:27, by Kim Deng

    The Dinka Kingdom days are numbered, which means the greater Upper Nile will will be cleared out within three days.

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