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S. Sudan army says foiled attack on Upper Nile oilfields

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July 23, 2017 (JUBA) – South Sudan army said Saturday that it foiled an alleged attack by the armed opposition forces from taking over an oil field located in the country’s oil-producing state of Upper Nile.

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A worker at the power plant of an oil processing facility in South Sudan’s Unity state on 22 April 2012 (Photo: Reuters)

The army spokesperson, Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai, said their forces fought in to defend from rebel forces intending to gain control of the oil areas.

The army, according to the military spokesman, has the constitutional mandate to protect national resources of the country, including the oilfields from destruction in the interest of the public.

“We have said before that we did not violate the ceasefire because we have not launched any attack on nobody or their positions after the declaration of the ceasefire. Our forces kept their positions and complied,” Ruai told the state-owned television (SSBC) on Sunday.

“The anti-peace elements took advantage and they continued to carry out attacks on the positions of our forces and all they have been doing is to fight back in self-deference,” he added.

The official said government forces have been trying to the contain rebels from infiltrating oilfields with the intention of destroying them.

Meanwhile, the armed opposition faction loyal to the country’s First Vice-President Gen. Taban Deng Gai said they were attacked by what he described as “anti-peace” elements in Northern Liech state.

“We predict the aim of the attack is to provoke the situation in Bentiu and cause insecurity in hope of a full out to halt the planned resumption of oil production in Northern Liech state,” Dickson Gatluak, spokesperson of the opposition faction, said in a statement.

He further claimed rebels loyal to former First Vice-President, Riek Machar attacked their defensive lines at Panakuach, Unity state oilfields, Tor Abieth and Tharwangyiela.

“We urge the international monitors, NGOs [Non-Governmental Organisations] and the international community to monitor with maximum attention the situation in Bentiu,” stressed Gatluak.

The official reiterated the commitment of the armed opposition faction loyal to Gai towards the implementation of the 2015 peace deal but warned that continued aggression from the rebels will retaliation from pro-government forces in self-defence.

The South Sudanese conflict started in December 2013 when President Kiir accused Machar of a coup attempt. Since then, tens of thousands of people were killed and over 2 million displaced.

(ST)

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  • 24 July 07:31, by Eastern

    Well, defending oil infrastructure is no mean feat. The oil pipeline runs for hundreds of kilometers up north making more vulnerable to vandalisation if that option was chosen. Kiir can’t police the entire oil pipeline, can he? Besides the oil infrastructure, there are bridges and other important infrastructure to target. Can Kiir provide security to all these?

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    • 24 July 07:53, by Midit Mitot

      I hope Lul Ruach was taught with lie/propaganda when He went back to school,Lul had deny all the offensive against IO areas sorry!!

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  • 24 July 07:48, by john locke

    Kiirs administration is full of liars. So i guess the attack on pagak and their lies about seizing it was all a lie. We the io will take the oil fields from this corrupt broke government. Their soldiers run away during battles anyway. The mathiang anyor militia went back to aweil. What will kiir do now. Other than buying the updf and splm north militia

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    • 24 July 13:57, by Kalo

      John Locke,carry your own cross,no any SPLM-N will involve in your Fucking useless tribal war,we had been their over 21 years,nothing new to us,there is no reason will let us to be there,the most important to shut up your mouth!!

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  • 24 July 07:51, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    Here we go again. The government in Juba is creating a reason for going for offensive attacks against Riek Machar forces. Who does not know that for government to maintain Dinka supremacy in South Sudan their army has to try to subjugate those who stand for justice and democracy. This utterance is only meant to cover their lie and misinformation about the security situation in South Sudan.

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  • 24 July 08:00, by Eastern

    I predicted this scenario about 3 years ago that the tribal government will be tempted to engage in war at multiple fronts: it’s happening now. You can’t fight multiple enemies and expect to win. Uganda will not continue lending Kiir its war assets ad infinitum.....

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    • 24 July 11:58, by South South

      Eastern,

      Riek’s IO is not new to come out and say this very empty statement " fight multiple enemies". The people we are fighting today where fighting a long side with Sudan, but SPLA stood tall. You are very afraid from Uganda, sweet. Rebellion in Equatoria is literally dead. In Upper Nile, focus is now taking back Pagak. Go away poor old man.

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      • 24 July 12:05, by Eastern

        I am glad that you need diapers to contain a rebellion Kiir and cohorts contributed in starting. Equatoria is already largely depopulated thanks to the war shifting its theater. Nobody fears Museveni; for the UPDF to be engaged, they need funding. Museveni pulled out of South Sudan for the same reason. Kiir can’t fight rebellions on multiple fronts. This is the truth!!

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        • 24 July 12:36, by South South

          Eastern,

          Do you know that there is a diaper for old people like you. I do believe you are doing unimaginable down. Kiir is holding power very tight. Sing, lie and dance somewhere.

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          • 24 July 17:01, by Eastern

            South South,

            Do you have your head on top of your neck or it’s sitting in the SOUTH of your body? Use what you have if you don’t have the means to aqcuire those diapers from St. Joseph’s pharmacy just across Juba Teaching hospital, opposite the emergency section/department.....

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            • 24 July 19:14, by South South

              Eastern,

              You will be dreaming about St. Joseph’s Pharmacy. Men are sitting near it. You need to get very special permission to get to Juba, let alone Juba Teaching Hospital. Old man, you smell shit, have you done something down in your diaper?

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        • 24 July 16:23, by jubaone

          Eastern,
          It is NOT that the jienge SPLAnyor is strong, rather the armed Opposition has NOT put it´s house in order. The jienge army is spread thin across the country and the opposition should isolate, strangle/starve and liquidate them. I strongly believe, a conventional war is NOT tenable but a protracted, guerilla and terror attacks are the best.

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          • 24 July 19:10, by South South

            junaone,

            War is entering 4th year and you are still not putting your house in order. Are you people mentally retarded ? People like jubaone or Eastern will never fight war in their life, only internet use. Men know how to organize and put their feet on the ground and fight as long as it will take them.

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      • 24 July 16:29, by jubaone

        Eastern,
        The jienges ever since resorted to hirelings and mercenaries. Such bogus claims like South South are propagating are jienge trash. Foolishly, the nygateen under Taban Gai are doing the dirty job, killing their own Nuers. Equatorian bootlickers have chosen to go to the frontlines while the jienges cowardly stay behind as "benydits". Heli-gunships are flown by foreigners NOT jienges.

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      • 24 July 16:40, by jubaone

        South South,
        Why cant you take a ride from Juba to Yei and back or choose to travel to Torit or Maridi? Perhaps you can then tell us that the rebellion in Equatoria is dead. Or did you know that this is high MTN hunting season? If you have your MTN trademarks on your forehead, sorry, these roads may be too dangerous for you. Kindly do some plastic surgery.

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        • 24 July 16:53, by Eastern

          jubaone,

          I have been moving around the country especially Equatoria recently. What I witnessed in Lainya and elsewhere in SPLAnyor makes me shade sad. The SPLAnyor have been left to themselves in terms of ration; when I was out there, they were surviving on the farms left behind by the civilians who had fled to Uganda and Congo. The SPLAnyors have bullets but no food nor medicine!!

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        • 24 July 19:04, by South South

          jubaone,

          Roads are opened from Kampala to Aweil. Border between South Sudan is closed, so,we decided to get our goods from Uganda and Kenya. Try to close roads leading to Uganda and Kenya and see reaction. You are fury and you have no words to make your case, the only thing left for you is to be very angry. When you lost everything, anger will replace everything in your mind.

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  • 24 July 10:14, by Sunday Junup

    Fear has now hit Juba government! There is no way to attack Unity oilfield with Kiir Militia in Panakuach. I hope you better admit that Panakuac is gone before you talk of Unity oilfield

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  • 24 July 14:48, by Dak tak

    Lul ruai will never stop lying as long as he has an access to their lying machine ssbc. South sudanese will never stop as you expect, no one will surrender to such bad and failed leadership that is rotten to the core. South sudanese will wait in Pocs until real men finish their work.

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    • 24 July 16:35, by jubaone

      Dak Tak,
      The jienges are masters of deceit and folly. They have that from their jellaba cousins. Stupidly, the poor nyagat, Lul Koang has chosen to kill his own people for a few silver pieces while the jienge cynically smiles. Village savages from Aweil/Gogrial cant fight; they go look for food and rape or simply run to Uganda or Kenya like South South.

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      • 24 July 17:07, by Eastern

        junaone,

        UNFORTUNATELY the issue has gone beyond the Nuers and Dinkas...

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      • 24 July 17:16, by Eastern

        Kenya is a country no EAC should look up to; Salva Kiir chose to copy more from Kenya ( before the constitution was promulgated....

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