Home | News    Wednesday 21 October 2015

Ugandan troops withdraw from South Sudan’s Jonglei state

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October 20, 2015 (BOR) – South Sudanese military leadership has announced that all foreign troops of the Ugandan People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) will complete their withdrawal from Bor, Jonglei state’s capital, by Friday.

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An unidentified man sits in the gun turret while leading a convoy of armoured vehicles from both the South Sudanese government forces and the Ugandan People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) in the streets of Jonglei capital Bor on 19 January 2014 (Photo: AP/Mackenzie Knowles-Coursin)

Thousands of the UPDF troops have been stationed in Bor to protect the state capital, its surroundings, and citizens from the threats of the armed opposition fighters led by former vice president, Riek Machar, who took control of the town from the South Sudanese army (SPLA) in January 2014 until the Ugandan troops came in to dislodge them from the area.

A cessation of hostilities agreement signed on 23 January 2014 by South Sudanese warring parties called for the UPDF withdrawal, but the provision was resisted by Juba and Kampala and could not be implemented.

However, a final peace agreement signed between President Salva Kiir and his rival, Machar, in August, brokered by the East African regional bloc, IGAD, and international partners, demanded the full withdrawal of the Ugandan forces from South Sudan’s soil.

Ugandan government last week announced its troops had started to withdraw from South Sudan in implementation of the peace agreement.

The withdrawal was supposed to complete by 10 October, but it has run behind the schedule for unknown reasons, with some government officials including the army spokesman, Colonel Philip Aguer, claiming that the foreign troops will not withdraw until a security arrangement implementation document is signed by the rival parties in Addis Ababa.

Speaking to Sudan Tribune on Tuesday by phone from his barrack, SPLA commander for Jonglei state’s operation, General Malual Ayom, however confirmed that the Ugandan troops had started to withdraw from Jonglei state on Tuesday and that all their forces will complete the pull out on Friday.

The army general, Ayom, assured the citizens of maximum protection by the SPLA, saying people should not panic because UPDF is leaving the country.

“There shouldn’t be any panic to the population of Jonglei state, the SPLA is there to protect people of Bor. They should continue with their normal activities,” assured Ayom.

General Ayom said it would take three days for the withdrawal to complete, explaining that UPDF had stationed a huge force of thousands in Jonglei state which needed a phased pull out. The 2,000 troops stationed in Bor had started their withdrawal from Tuesday.

“That was a big force, this huge number, they cannot leave immediately. It has to move in phases, the first force has left and the second may go tomorrow [Wednesday], and by Friday, both of them should have left,” he confirmed.

He said for the first time in two years, the flag of the Ugandan authorities which was erected in Bor in January 2014 was now lowered and the SPLA flag was erected in its place at the barracks previously occupied by the Ugandan troops.

“We had the farewell party this morning; the flag of Uganda troops in Bor was lowered, musicians from Uganda and South Sudan attended the farewell party, we slaughtered a white bull for their farewell party,” he added.

UPDF GIVEN GIFTS

General Ayom further narrated that some gifts were given to the Ugandan president, Yoweri Museveni, for sending his troops to South Sudan to protect the citizens of South Sudan.

He also said a rare white bull and a hyper were given to the Ugandan army signifying their commitment in Jonglei state.

“You know white cow was not [usually] given. We give it in three occasions in the history of Jonglei, when we are marrying as part of the dowry, and we gave it to president Jaffer Nimeiri of Sudan when he commissioned the current Jonglei as Jonglei province in 1976. This is the third time we give it as symbol to the president of Uganda in appreciation for keeping peace in South Sudan,” the General continued.

UPDF will also withdraw from Juba, the national capital, and parts of Central Equatoria and Eastern Equatoria states. However, Ugandan forces currently stationed in Western Equatoria state may continue to stay as part of a separate arrangement under the African Union to hunt the rebels of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).

(ST)

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  • 21 October 2015 10:00, by Thokidine

    I wonder why facts are so easily distorted, UG was invited to protect Dinka Govt and now they appreciated UG for protecting citizen of SS, but what about those they are killing with cluster bomb, heavy weapons, are they not pple/citizen of SS?

    So just praise UG for protecting Dinka, not the pple of SS for those fighting for their right are part and parcel of SS.

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    • 21 October 2015 10:23, by Khent

      Thokidine

      Salva Kiir made the mistake of allowing too many of you Nuer to return in 2006 after decades of serving Khartoum; you were integrated into the army and became 70% of the armed forces, which is precisely why Salva needed Uganda’s assistance in the early stages of the war. Any tribe could have threatened Salva Kiir if they too had dominated the army the same way...

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      • 21 October 2015 10:25, by Khent

        The people who actually fought the war against Khartoum largely went home in 2006, and on the one (1) year anniversary of this evanescent peace they graciously permitted the return of Khartoum’s wretched weasels, snakes and dogs. Snakes and dogs that quite unfortunately became the majority in our armed forces in 2006, even though they were Khartoum’s witless lackeys during the war.

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        • 21 October 2015 10:29, by Khent

          Where were the Ugandans when we defeated you in retaliation for the 91 massacres? You idiots keep on whining about the presence of a maximum of 4,000 Ugandan troops and claim that without the Ugandans the Dinka would lose despite the fact that you were defeated in the 90s when you had the SAF, PDF, Murahaleen, LRA, Fertit militias, Equatorial Defence force...

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          • 21 October 2015 10:30, by Khent

            ..Popular Resistance Movement/Army, the Didinga, Toposa, Mundari and Lotuka militias. We defeated Riek’s forces even while fighting the SAF which had 100, 000 fighters. The PDF had around 70, 000 men. Altogether this anti-Dinka alliance was composed of almost a quarter of a million fighters and you fools are complaining about 4, 000 Ugandan troops?

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            • 21 October 2015 10:43, by Khent

              You formed military alliances with Khartoum during the war; an alliance that targeted and absolutely devastated the Dinka!? Why is it that you people feel no shame for this!? Ah, I get it, the Nuer are entitled to establish military alliances with Khartoum... but you want to condemn the Dinka for establishing a military alliance with a State that actually didn’t murder millions of Southerners!

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              • 21 October 2015 10:44, by Khent

                The Arabs brought entire divisions to bear against the Dinka. The Arabs fought beside you. The Arabs fed you. The Arabs gave you weapons, ammunition and logistical support. Why are you people wholly unwilling to discuss your previous alliance with Khartoum!? You people are hypocrites!

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                • 21 October 2015 10:46, by Khent

                  When Khartoum’s aircraft bombed the Dinka for thirteen [13] years following your defection, operating in tandem with your militias on the ground... Was that not cowardice!? Well, wasn’t it!? Or do you suppose that you are entitled to an exemption from the demands of a moral code that you don’t actually subscribe to!?

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            • 21 October 2015 10:52, by Mi diit

              Khent (Rommel),

              Don’t forget that your SPLA is composed of soldiers from the other 63 tribes including half of the Nuer in the army who now fight for you Dinka in Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity states. So why so despreate to need UPDF?

              Stop lying a out the past and the present situations.

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              • 21 October 2015 10:55, by Mi diit

                It is good that the shameful flag of Bor occupation by Uganda is lowered. It was a big shame for the Dinka to seek foreign protection from Nuer.

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                • 21 October 2015 11:01, by Mi diit

                  You have the president, you have the defense minister, you have the army chief of staff, you have the police chief, etc, and you have the money, bank of South Sudan, finance minister, etc, and yet you needed external protection from half Nuer. Pathetic tribe.

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              • 21 October 2015 11:03, by Khent

                Mi diit

                The vast majority of the Nuer defected in 2013, so there is little use in evoking their participation. The Bul Nuer militia [which was never very large] are the only Nuer that remain. How are they half of your tribe? The presence of some Nuer Generals in the army doesn’t change the fact that soldiers under their command are not Nuer...

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                • 21 October 2015 11:06, by Khent

                  Just months ago, the leadership in Equatoria complained that Equatorian soldiers were removed from the military. You had a 100, 000 SAF troops on your side. You had 70, 000 PDF ’troops’, tens of thousands of Murahaleen and tens of thousands of tribal militiamen in the South fighting on your side for 13 years straight. Pathetic!

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                  • 21 October 2015 11:12, by Khent

                    We contributed the most divisions, battalions and martyrs. We contributed more than every tribe in South Sudan, combined. The Nuba tribes were the only other people that truly contributed, and they’ve been left out in the cold. The pathetic tribe is the tribe that defended oilfields for Khartoum for almost two decades.

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                    • 21 October 2015 11:12, by Khent

                      I have read articles in which the Nuer bemoan the suffering that they’re experiencing and how they’ve never had it worst. I agree. Your alliance with Khartoum shielded you from the affects of war. You really didn’t suffer during the war and so this is kind of a shock to you, isn’t it? The Dinka know sacrifice and suffering. You are fighting only two [2] Dinka sections due to Salva’s unpopularity

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                      • 21 October 2015 11:14, by Khent

                        I’m glad that the Ugandans have finally withdrawn. Salva Kiir should resign and military command should bring back the veterans that fought Khartoum and Riek during the civil war in command roles. We didn’t need the Ugandans before and we really do not need them now. We just need Salva Kiir to resign. I am tired of his weakness, stupidity, myopia and flabbiness.

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                        • 21 October 2015 11:23, by Khent

                          Why is it wrong for the Dinka to work with 4,000 Ugandan troops for less than two years and yet it seems to have been perfectly fine for you people to work with 100, 000 SAF troops, 70, 000 PDF troops, tens of thousands of Murahaleen and tens of thousands of tribal militiamen across South Sudan for almost two decades?

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                          • 21 October 2015 11:24, by Khent

                            There’s not a single tribe in all of Sudan [North & South] that doesn’t know that you formed desperate and shameful military alliances with the various regimes in Khartoum, with a clear emphasis on forming alliances with the SAF, PDF and the Misseriya and the Rizeigat Arab tribes. You’re the cowards. You ran to them for help, but you still failed.

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                            • 21 October 2015 14:57, by sudani ana

                              Khent
                              The obvious difference is that Sudan was one country and Khartoum was the national government ostensibly Sudan. Siding with your government tactically is different from bringing in the army of a foreign country such as Uganda to kill your own citizens. Just saying

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                              • 21 October 2015 15:48, by Khent

                                sudani ana

                                Ah yes, the ’National government’. Do you mean the same ’National government’ that came to power through a coup? That’s illegal. The same ’National government’ that made it abundantly clear that it only represented the Arab, Muslim North? The same ’National government’ that intensified the annexation of Southern territory? That’s not a ’government’ - it’s a criminal syndicate...

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                                • 21 October 2015 15:54, by Khent

                                  ..The ’leadership’ in Juba have also proven themselves to be nothing but criminals - corrupt, callous, myopic thugs that are responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of civilians in a totally unnecessary war. Greater Sudan has no ’government’. The Dinka NEVER felt that the Ignaz were their government, and we paid for that with well over a million lives.

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                                  • 21 October 2015 16:03, by Khent

                                    There were dozens of Khartoum compliant tribal militias in the South - armed specifically to fight us. We went through absolute hell. Some people may think that I hate the Nuer, but that’s not the case... I hate what they did; I hate the fact that they’re proud of it. I can speak to them the way I do because they’re family. One can be brutally honest with family...

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                                    • 21 October 2015 16:04, by Khent

                                      The Nuer originated as an offshoot of the Dinkas and eventually became distinctive enough to be identified as a separate tribe. (Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior, Elliott Sober)

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                                      • 21 October 2015 16:16, by Khent

                                        Khartoum itself invited Islamists fighters from Egypt and Somalia to fight in the South. Here’s a source: http://www.aberfoylesecurity.com/?p=533. Another source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article40746

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                                        • 21 October 2015 16:23, by Khent

                                          I use to think that Southerners should regard Northerners as family even after secession; put them above all else, treat them with a special dispensation, regardless of what took place in the past... but then Khartoum insisted that it would retain all the lands that it stole from the South. One such area [Kafia Kingi] is larger than Lebanon...

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                                          • 21 October 2015 16:30, by Khent

                                            ..And so I snapped out my daze and naivety. If Khartoum didn’t engage in land theft and occupation, Greater Sudan could have had an arrangement similar to the European Union. It really is unfortunate that we have to be enemies, but land is holy. The resting place of one’s forefathers can never be surrendered.

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              • 22 October 2015 08:14, by Force 1

                Mi diit;
                You remember in the 1990s when you Nuer join force with Bashire against SPLA; did SPLA ever invited Ugandans for protection? Who ends up joining the SPLA in 2002 and 2005? Let me give you a hint! Riek and his Nuer forces. You Nuer are just useless tools in the country.

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