Home | News    Monday 26 September 2016

South Sudanese army and rebels clash in oil-rich Unity state


September 25, 2016 (BENTIU) - Heavy fighting broke out on Sunday morning between South Sudanese government troops (SPLA) and armed opposition faction (SPLA-IO) in Rubkotna county of the country’s oil-rich Unity state.

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South Sudanese rebel troops loyal to former vice-president Riek Machar stand on guard in Unity state capital Bentiu on 12 January 2014 after recapturing the strategic town from government troops (Photo: Reuters)

Civilians, who fled to the United Nations camp in Unity state capital, Bentiu, confirmed the clashes in series of interviews with Sudan Tribune.

Heavy gunshots and bombardments were heard west of Rubkotna.

A resident of Rubkotna, only identified as Peter, said clashes occurred in Wichbaar, Tong and Pakuur in the northwest of Bentiu.

The press secretary to the rebel-appointed governor of Unity state, Weirial Puok Baluang claimed the armed opposition faction had been facing imminent attacks from government forces for weeks.

He said they repulsed the attacks, as their forces advanced towards Bentiu town “with heavy causality against the government forces”.

“Nonetheless, our valiant army SPLA-IO repelled them with vast mortalities inflicted on them as they were dreadfully running back towards Bentiu town,” Puok told Sudan Tribune over phone.

Puok accused forces allied to President Salva Kiir of resorting to war options, but said the armed opposition was well equipped militarily.

“The demise of the August 2015 agreement on the TGoNU [Transitional Government of National Unity] and the subsequent exit of the unsolicited weeds from the SPLM/A-IO have boosted the willpower of our army. Thus, it will allow the rightful owners of the land to claim back their family land in Bentiu anytime from now,” he said.

The army is yet to officially react to reports on Sunday’s clashes in Unity state.


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  • 26 September 03:39, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    This is a job well done. It must not be confined in Bentiu only. In Bahr el ghazal fire must erupt and so is western equatoria since eastern and central equatoria is ablaze. JCE should know no amount of dollar is enough for us to sell our future generation and land to Dinka and their benefactors of East Africa notably Museveni.

    repondre message

    • 26 September 09:11, by Mapuor

      Shame on those who beat the drum of war and do not go to war should know that SPLA io is already defeated and any prolonged armed struggle will never unite South Sudanese but it will further polarize the country along ethnic and clan lines.

      repondre message

  • 26 September 07:13, by Midit Mitot

    Bullshit, why are you running back barely? this is childish behaviors from those unprofessional army of Kiir really.

    repondre message

  • 26 September 09:31, by Augustino

    I KNOW very well that real army and real fighters from Nuer had already finished and some are badly disabled for all wars long. those who are laughing are one living in abroad not in South Sudan. Mind you for sure no war is going to fought again in Bahr El Ghazal, that is ill wishes from those longing for war there. Our kids will still continue learning while Nuer kids back again to suffer.

    repondre message

    • 26 September 12:07, by Midit Mitot

      You polish majority of Barelegazal will one day blame yourselves,South Sudan leadership is not a kingdom.

      repondre message

      • 26 September 15:51, by Hardlinner

        midit, what does it make when u support a corrupt n mass murderer person like Riek?. look like u are simply asking for tribal war. we don’t care about Kiir corruption but as longer as support for kiir mutual benefit. kiir will leave power through peaceful means. those advocating for war will also get people ready to fight them. kiir and Riek were together in the same government and have failed.

        repondre message

        • 26 September 16:00, by Midit Mitot

          You are now talking Man, but Kiir need to be topple from power by barrel, not peaceful mean you are dreaming, because He has no ears to hear.

          repondre message

  • 26 September 11:12, by Beel Jah Jak

    good, let the fucken JCE face it rough this time around

    repondre message

  • 26 September 14:06, by Angelo Achuil

    Is there wonder why ethnic violence is so easy in S. Sudan? Look at the comments we make about ourselves, how we like farting with our mouths! To me, our words are the best thermometer of peace in this country. It is said "You want to know when peace will come ’just monitor South Sudanese comments of themselves’"-will show you how far or near true peace really is. Comments betrays what’s cooking!

    repondre message

  • 26 September 15:43, by Hardlinner

    it is just same lies like Gatdet Dak. what ever news that come from rebels is 99.9999% lies. Riek rebels have been lying all along. just like Gatdet Dak used to say that are ready to storm Juba and restore order. people have wait for rebels storming of Juba to no avail. what ensured after was surrendering of Riek force to UN in congo. so your propaganda is not new.

    repondre message

  • 26 September 16:57, by Hardlinner

    it look like north sudan is now on supporting Riek rebels. south sudan government should ask north sudan government to kick out Riek. or else they breaching the cooperate agreement.

    repondre message

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