National
S.Sudan ceasefire broken as rebels and army battle
Publish Date: May 12, 2014
S.Sudan ceasefire broken as rebels and army battle
South Sudanese President Salva Kiir delivers a speech upon returning in Juba on May 11, 2014, a day after signing a peace deal with rebels in Addis Ababa.AFP/PHOTO
  • mail
  • img
newvision


South Sudanese rebels and government troops battled on Monday, breaking a fresh ceasefire deal and dashing hopes to a swift end to five months of brutal civil war.


Fighting raged in the oil-producing state of Upper Nile, Defence Minister Kuol Manyang told AFP, adding that government troops had been ordered "not to go and attack, but only to fight in self defence."

Since President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar signed a deal Friday to halt fighting, both sides have accused each other of launching ground attacks and artillery barrages against each other.

A South Sudanese man hold a placard reading "No to War, Yes to Elections!" and a South Sudan flag as people receive South Sudanese President upon returning in Juba on May 11, 2014, a day after signing a peace deal. AFP/PHOTO

Machar was "not in control of his forces" and heavily armed militia troops known as the White Army -- who smear themselves in wood ash to ward off mosquitoes and as war-paint -- had attacked government troops, Manyang said.

"These are irregular forces, the White Army is armed civilians, and they do not know about the cessation of hostilities agreement that was signed," he added.

"They are the ones that attacked, because they think the war is still going on."

Army spokesman Philip Aguer said that monitors from regional bloc IGAD were being sent to the flashpoint town of Bentiu, capital of the northern oil-producing Unity state, which has swapped hands repeatedly in the conflict.

Kiir has insisted he wanted peace, telling crowds in Juba on Sunday that "we have ordered our forces not to lift a foot from where they are to attack rebels".

The two sides had agreed to a ceasefire in January, but that deal quickly fell apart and unleashed a new round of fierce fighting.

Observers have said both side will face challenges in implementing a truce, with the rebels made up of a loose coalition of army defectors and ethnic rebels.

Both sides accuse the other of using mercenaries and rebel forces from neighbouring Sudan, while on the government side -- backed by Ugandan troops -- the command structure under Kiir is also seen as weak.

The war in the world's youngest nation has claimed thousands -- and possibly tens of thousands -- of lives, with more than 1.2 million people forced to flee their homes. AFP




 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
USAID applauds Uganda’s increased funding to family planning
The United States Agency for Development (USAID) has commended the leadership in Uganda for achieving and surpassing its commitment to increase the level of annual government funding for family planning supplies from three million to five million dollars...
Civil servants asked to use new technologies to tackle poverty
Civil servants have been advised to develop new innovation technologies that will improve service delivery in the country, fight poverty and enhance socio-economic transformation...
Uganda hails China on transformation
Vice President Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi lauded China saying its continued investment in Uganda will help the Uganda transform to a middle-income one....
Students back Museveni on scrapping useless courses
Students of Trinity College Nabbingo and Seeta High School have backed President Yoweri Museveni on scrapping useless courses asking why they are made to study subjects that will not help them get employment....
American lady runs 48kms for African Children’s Choir
An American lady on Sunday ran 48 kilometers to raise funds for the African Children’s Choir...
Government to reduce internet costs
The government is set to reduce internet costs by at least 80%, for easy accessibility by Ugandans....
Will police's move to increase the number of investigators help deal with fraud?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter