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South Sudan army contains internal rift over deserting units

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Sudan People's Liberation Army soldiers walk along a road near Bor, on January 31, 2014 (AFP Photo)

June 30, 2017 (JUBA) - The command of Sudan Sudanese army (SPLA) has contained a rift among soldiers deployed on the front line in the northern part of the country, after fears that a split could undermine the capability of the government army in that troubled area.

A high-ranking military officer told Sudan Tribune on Friday that a decision by some officers and soldiers loyal to the former SPLA chief of staff deployed to the former Unity State caused a headache to the command until Gen. Paul Malong had to be approached by the community leaders and his political friends to talk to them to drop their plan to leave in their areas of their deployment.

“There was a misunderstanding between units of our forces in Leer. They were those who were deployed there as part of reinforcement to bolster the fighting strength of the 4th division infantry. These units were from different divisions in the country. Some were taken from the headquarters and others from other divisions. They were deployed for specific reasons for a specific period but they overstayed and they felt they need to be replaced”, explained the military officer.

The officer said a majority of these soldiers come from Aweil of Bahr el-Ghazal region and instead of asking for a permission to return home, they prefer going to their families in Aweil even before replacement is made.

“It is a big challenge but thanks God the former chief of general staff intervened and was able to speak to them urging to remain in their positions (on the front line against the enemy) and they listened to him. Now they are waiting for the replacement so that there is no security vacuum”, said the officer who did not want to be identified.

Several military sources and politicians with direct knowledge also confirmed that an intense situation emerged between different units and soldiers loyal to Paul Malong.

Observers say the rift meant to protest the removal of former chief of staff from his position, pointing their feel personally harmed by this decision because their regional dignitary protected their rights and families if something happened to them.

(ST)

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  • 1 July 07:09, by Dinka-Defender-General

    Well, P. Kiir had underestimated the position of Mading Awiel soldiers. I believe this is one of the huge mistake P. Kiir had ever made in his leadership. It seems P. Kiir had listened too much to medias not what is really happening between him and General Awan. What was the reason you removed Gen. Awan from his position? It looks like P. Kiir will be overthrow by Dinka People not other tribes.

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    • 1 July 07:21, by Dinka-Defender-General

      Continue.. I call P. Kiir to step down to avoid consequences. I believe there are a few ways to solve this problem. You need to allow General Awan to go to Awiel. Second, eliminate your power to remove leaders from their positions without citizens vote. Third, let Deng Alor, Pagan, Or General Mac to takes over the presidency because they will solve Abyei and Panthou issues.

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      • 1 July 08:03, by john akeen

        Right, but don’t speak with anger, don’t forget Pagan Amum is the main reason for the war that is happening right now in our country, if you remember when president Kiir desmes Reik M, Deng A, Pagan A & all of them leaders, they all went to their houses. Reik Machar was not go to fight SPLA, but Pagan A didn’t like it, he started running around telling the all world

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        • 1 July 08:20, by john akeen

          that President Kiir had done unconstitutional thing removing the frost vice President, when nobody was paying attention to him, then he went and turned his attention to Reik Machar by telling him that he need to fight P Kiir because what president had done mby removing the country frist vice President is constitutionally, then Reik told him Pagan, if we fight P Kii, people are gonna saver, Pagan t

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          • 1 July 08:33, by john akeen

            told Reik that just try you maybe you gonna win and you know that if you win the war you will be the president and plus you have army’s, Reik told pagan that he doesn’t have army anymore all the army that he used to lead are now a national army forces not he’s, but Pagan told Reik just try And you will be the president and plus we gonna help you to win we gonna stand by you

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            • 1 July 10:51, by Mr Point

              John Akeen

              It is clear from your comment here you do not understand what you are talking about. You’ve actually admitted that Kiir acted outside the power given him in the Constitution. Perhaps you do not know what "unconstitutional"l means.

              The Civil War started when Kiir staged a fake coup to grab power and get the SPLM leaders out of his way. He has tried twice to kill Machar and failed.

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              • 1 July 18:31, by john akeen

                Mr. Point
                I agree with for some few points, but you need to understand that Pagan Amum was the only one that who was shawnting around and Reik Machar was at his house with his family, he wasn’t thinking about you war, but Pagan Amum didn’t give hem a chance to think wildly. Pagan made Reik Machar angry about his removable until he Reik Machar went & started a war because Pagan

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                • 1 July 18:52, by john akeen

                  kept on telling Reik Machar that P Kiir had done unconstitutional thing and the only way to solve that is to fight p Kiir by using force, so that way they can take over the country leadership, in 2013 SOUTH sudan had no constitution and south Sudanese they wasn’t thinking that they have their own citizenship they wasn’t thinking that they have joined the world, we voted for separation without

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                  • 1 July 19:02, by john akeen

                    organizing ourselves to be one nations, anyways you said you hate Dinka and Dinka said I don’t hate you, now tell me how are you going to fix that? And also citizens are asking you to forgive and put your weapon down and you have refused to do so, tell me how are you going to lead people if you refuse their call for peace?

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          • 1 July 08:36, by john akeen

            I meant unconstitutionally

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          • 1 July 10:33, by Eastern

            There’s absolutely nothing with fighting and deposing a tribal and inept regime such as this led by Kiir...Don’t blame Pagan Amum Okiech...

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      • 2 July 23:55, by deng

        Dinka Defender,
        I agree with you on some of your arguments of how stupid this president acts alone without votes. Base on my personal point of view, this war btw Riek Machar and Kiir was business intend not a political differences. Riek might not be aware of that in the beginning but Kiir game board is to kick out all braves politicians so that he can pockets all oil by himself surrounded by greed

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      • 3 July 00:04, by deng

        Cont...

        He wants pockets all oil money and therefore, he don’t care who live or die. That’s why he acts stupidly by firing the man who come to his recued in 2013 war when white army was about to march to Juba. A man again who come to his recued in 2016 J1 bodyguards war when he was left with nothing but his dick shrinking and breathing like ducks. Paul Malong come to his recued but now what?

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      • 3 July 00:21, by deng

        Cont...
        Kiir ideologies are visible and his time to leave the power is getting nearer each and everyday he acts stupid. Stupid coward why he didn’t left Malong go if he is a man. Akol Koordit should be fired immediately if Kiir want save lives. I don’t know how many caps former President George W. Bush gave to this man but if it’s one that’s ashame because he wear it everyday. Time to wake!!!

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    • 1 July 08:25, by jubaone

      Jienge Defender General,
      This confirms what we have always been saying, that this is a jienge army, by the jienge, for the Jienge republic. Whether they rebel or stay this is a SPLAnyor. A tribal army.

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      • 1 July 16:34, by Marco A. Wek

        Jubaone, if your type do not want to join the army even after war ended between North Sudan and South Sudan, Nuer and Dinka has to sign up to defend their country. It is unfortunate these two brothers seem to turn on each other. Tell Equatorian to sign up in numbers.

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      • 1 July 20:26, by Dinka-Defender-General

        JUBAONE, you are outside the scope. I never agree or tell you that the SPLA belongs to Dinka only. Where do you get the idea that SPLA belongs to Dinka? Also I never agree with p.Kiir leadership, but I don’t approve war to overthrow the p. Kiir from power. I always approved public protests to overthrow the p. Kiir or through an election. These are two ways I will agree with you 100%…

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    • 1 July 08:45, by Adok Wolu

      what every disturbed u from sleeping is your own making, now, its a big worry from anyor and their likes to go home and Kiir insist to keep them in front line while their big boss is under arrest what is the equation find out.

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    • 3 July 00:13, by deng

      Cont...
      He just dispose him so that nobody brave like Paul Malong who can say no stand besides. All that is left with him now are yes politicians. When Kiir says lets steal big, they will all say yes. When Kiir tell them let firing more braves men to increase the rebellions so we can remain in power longer they all say yes Sir. Well, Kiir really underestimates Aweilians. We don’t give a jerks!!!

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  • 1 July 09:03, by Mopedi

    Why should they split, they made it worse for them to feel the heats. Does Malong and Kiir thinks the Awielians can form a national army capable of protecting territorial integrity of SS? No time is out, president step down, live the army chief of staff Ajongo to take people for election period, then your people will be saved from revenge.

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  • 1 July 10:53, by Equatoria Defence Force

    The Aweil peopple have spoken.... very soon strong statement is gonna come out of the great equatoria land...

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  • 1 July 11:12, by gatkhor Nueri

    I have told you several time,no one have a miracle like Dr.Machar,Unless you call him back and he will go to advise all Aweilian include Stupid King Paul Malong.

    Good luck!

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  • 1 July 11:42, by Sunday Junup

    I will destroy Dinka Unity (Ngundeng) now is Kiir Vs Malong! Let wait JCE will be divided too

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  • 1 July 18:17, by lino

    Now the magic is turning on the magician!!!

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  • 1 July 22:56, by Theone

    It seems that not even one of you knew personally Riek,pagan,and Lam Akol

    These;they have been campaigning since day one they joined SPLA/SPLM,They thought that were smart and if Garang died,they’ll take the power(IMPATIENT)

    PEOPLE(me included) thought Salva was a naive,but he is not. WHY? Ask those who rebelled under watch of John Garang.

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