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Fear of South Sudanese rebels presence in Western Bahr el Ghazal


April, 29 2015 (RAJA) - A close source from the South Sudanese military intelligence in Western Bahr el Ghazal state said a movement of rebel fighters under the leadership of former vice president, Riek Machar, was detected in parts of the state.

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Rebel commander Brig General Joseph Gai Gatluak (left) pictured in front of his troops in Upper Nile state’s Manyo county in March 2015 (ST)

“On Friday, we learned that military helicopters carrying elements of SPLA-in-Opposition have landed in the forest and arrested honey hunters whom they later released,” an intelligence officer who preferred to remain anonymous told Sudan Tribune on Wednesday.

He claimed that rebel forces of the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) have established a base in Raja county, particularly around the border towns of Boromadina and Timsha, further alleging that Sudanese government was transporting them to the area.

“There is no doubt on the presence of rebels in Raja county and they are members of Raja community, because those who were arrested by those who landed in the area using helicopter said they have identified the army [rebels] through language they used,” he said.

The area is a thick forest in western part of Raja county near the Sudanese border where civilians go for hunting honey.

There had been allegations from Western Bahr el Ghazal state authority since last year that Sudan in Southern Darfur was accommodating the rebels who established military training camps in the areas of Domia, Dhein and Rodom respectively with recruitment of new forces mainly from the Raja youth.

SPLM-IO has also appointed a caretaker governor for the newly created Wau state who is said to be on the ground in Western Bahr el Ghazal trying to mobilise youth to start military activities in the state.

The accusation comes a day after president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir warned to pursue his country’s rebels inside South Sudan’s territory whether they are in “Raga, Aweil or Juba,” accusing the South Sudanese government of hosting, training and arming its rebel groups such as Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).

Sudan on many occasions carried out air raids inside South Sudan’s territory in what it claimed to be in pursuit against the rebels. The two countries have been trading accusations of supporting each other’s rebel groups.

There are fears that unless the war ends peacefully it may spill over to the previously relatively peaceful states of Bahr el Ghazal region. General Dau Aturjong of Northern Bahr el Ghazal and General Khamis Abdel Latif of Lakes state were also said to have been mobilising youth on the ground to start military operations against the government in Bahr el Ghazal region.


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  • 30 April 2015 09:50, by Eastern

    The shortsighted leaders are blindly leading South Sudan to become a battleground for Bashir, Museveni, Afwerki, etc. South Sudanese will be the losers.

    repondre message

    • 30 April 2015 09:55, by Mayom County Boy

      I call up-once government of south Sudan to clear those of Dau Atorjong away distance not to be near with communities of Awiel state .

      repondre message

      • 30 April 2015 10:24, by Eastern

        Are you sure the current rebellion that is spreading like wild fire can just be cleared that simple. The war is moving towards Mading Aweil and Gogrial!

        repondre message

  • 30 April 2015 17:48, by Hardlinner

    They will be rebels in their county and would have nowhere to venture to. For dinkas it is done deal. No riek rebels would be allow to roam in dinkas states. Kiir is corrupt and riek is mass murderers of dinkas In 1991 and 2013. So alot would be happy to kill riek than welcome him.

    repondre message

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