News / Africa

South Sudan Forces, Rebels Clash in Upper Nile

SPLA soldiers on guard in Bentiu, Unity state, Jan. 12, 2014.
SPLA soldiers on guard in Bentiu, Unity state, Jan. 12, 2014.
VOA News
South Sudan's military is battling rebels in the northern Upper Nile state region on Wednesday, amid international concerns that unrest in the world's newest country could spiral into a full-fledged civil war.

Army spokesman Philip Aguer told VOA fighting continues in the oil town of Malakal, the capital of Upper Nile state.

Forces loyal to President Salva Kiir are battling soldiers who back his former deputy, Riek Machar, who was dismissed in July.

On Tuesday, the rebels said they had captured Malakal -- a claim the government denied.

Doctors Without Borders says hundreds of people have been wounded over the past few days from fighting in Upper Nile, Unity and Jonglei states.

In a Wednesday statement, the relief group said it had treated 116 people for gunshot wounds in Malakal and the Upper Nile state community of Nasir.

Presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny, on Wednesday, called for unity and said the government forces would prevail.

"The SPLA (Sudan People's Liberation Army) will fight courageously and will defeat the rebels within and outside South Sudan borders," Ateny said. "The government will defeat the rebels forever. His excellency Kiir Mayardit instructed the government to stand ready to defend the nation from internal aggression. He urged all South Sudanese to stand together and see this dark moment through."

Representatives of both sides have been meeting in Ethiopia for talks on a possible cease-fire.

The U.N. says the unrest has left at least 1,000 people dead and more than 400,000 displaced.

In Washington, Linda Thomas-Greenfield of the State Department's African Affairs Bureau urged South Sudan's leaders to seek reconciliation.

"Each day the the conflict continues, the risk of all-out civil war grows and tensions continue to rise," she commented during a congressional hearing. "Let me conclude by saying that I am gravely concerned that the crisis in South Sudan has the potential to escalate even further. South Sudan's leaders on both sides are breaking their promises to their own people."

On Tuesday, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed alarm at the rising number of people who have been killed or forced from their homes by the conflict.

You May Like

China’s Influence Grows With New Infrastructure Bank

Multibillion-dollar China-backed and BRICS-supported Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank seen as possible challenger to such lenders as IMF, World Bank More

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

Rabbi Michel Serfaty makes the rounds in his friendship bus to encourage dialogue and break down barriers between the two groups More

Post-deal Iran Leaders Need 'Economic Momentum' to Solidify

Economists say deal could inject more than $100 billion into coffers - not enough to entirely rescue ailing economy - but maybe adequate to create 'economic momentum' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Canton Jones from: Uk
January 19, 2014 1:26 AM
In 1991 south Sudan had the same fight with that same person and now again.
But we pray for y'all and y'all keep praying too.
At the end of the day we all equal in God's present.
It's only stupid that put themselves above equality God bless ya

by: Anonymous
January 17, 2014 8:29 PM
How will the Kiir regime defeat the rebels when the war is already tribal? The whole situation is now messed up. One side is Dinka, supported by Uganda's junta and Rwanda' juna miliatis with USA complict, as usual winking to let the two East Africa warlords continue with their mischievous ways to get pardon for poor governance, while on the other side you have the Nuer loathed by the Kiir's regime & some other Dinka for their patriotic credentials according to historical events ,compared to Dinka who connived with the British in colonization. So no matter who is to blame for starting the conflict , a better way is to find unity like was for Kenya on the Raila vs Kibaaki struggle that led to an ethnic conflict. The models of Rwanda and Uganda are useless. Rwanda exterminates opponents while Uganda junta does the same or keeps them in terror and persecution in all ways possible. Sso inviting Uganda and Rwanda militias to help, will yield the results that look like DRC East before the UN intervention brigade with perpetual war, no one wants such a bad outcome. UN/AU can do better, Ethiopia and Kenya could be helpful in finding a sensible solution. A battle pitting Nuer vs Dinka with neighbors taking sides to help in the death of innocents is absurd, shameful and must be stopped at once. Obama and Kerry and Ban-Ki moon and others should have better methods at hand than relying on backward autocratic puppet buffoon leaders that terrorize their own people & the region to cling to power.

by: Eng Simon Monyluak Mijok from: juba
January 17, 2014 6:04 AM
Risk has be deciv by width There no different between risk and child of 5 years old.


by: Salah Pitia from: juba
January 16, 2014 10:06 AM
Riek must know that, nuer are fighting s sudan government

by: Peter from: Seward
January 16, 2014 8:39 AM
Ofcourse nuer were targeted from begening of the conflict and for these who blames Riek they did not know what started the problem. Kirr guards tried to disarm nuer soldiers then they refused and took arms against Kirr guards that is the fact about this conflict

by: Kudyang from: Juba
January 16, 2014 4:58 AM
What is happening now is bad and can only be count on Riak who decided to pick up arm. All claims that Nuer are targeted are all falls and baseless. If Riak had not organized his forces what happened within the presidential guards would have been settled simply. why did his forces started shooting in BILFAM? if he did not intent to fight why did he not stop his forces to not fight?

He knows that 1991 history is still fresh in the mind of people and he has created another worst one. He must face justice.

Thanks

by: jk from: msa
January 16, 2014 2:42 AM
If only the presindet could speak the two mother tongue there would be no war in s.sudan

by: JOSEPH K MUTAI from: kerich kenya
January 16, 2014 1:38 AM
The south sudan has democratic government and Machar should wait for next general election where he can finally fight with Presi dent Kiir through ballot box. Shame on Machar .He should be prosicuted for war crime at Hague.
In Response

by: mahamed from: mogdisho
January 16, 2014 12:43 PM
brothers and sisters of south sudan please stop civil war

by: Ori onii from: Kampala
January 16, 2014 12:53 AM
The first thing our adamant politicians(Kiir & Rak)have no appetitie to come into compromise bcoz they like o remain in the throne n casless about he suffering, killings, hoplessness of S. Sudanese who have lost trust of them. Our leaders can not see practical examples from Nyerere, Mansela and many others who did only of their people than theirself interest. What is the reasons of giving conditions after conditions to resolve the miscalculations of simple mathematics in order to cling on power: nine years+ is not enough with all these accumulated wealth of our blood? Alas, let them to prepare themselves to join Mr.Charles Taylor, and friends from Boznia etc.

by: Kakueng from: Nairobi
January 15, 2014 10:54 PM
In my opinion, the international community should come up with the policy to avoid dragging of country civil war.
Six months interim govt which represent both warring party is possible
Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Gay Marriage Ruling Yields Real-life Impacti
X
Michael Bowman
June 28, 2015 10:05 PM
Friday’s landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States is an outcome few thought possible just years ago, and shows a nation that increasingly tolerates and even celebrates the hopes and aspirations of gay people. VOA’s Michael Bowman spoke to a same-sex couple that will benefit from the high court ruling, and to a Christian scholar who is apprehensive about its potential consequences for America’s faith community.
Video

Video US Gay Marriage Ruling Yields Real-life Impact

Friday’s landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States is an outcome few thought possible just years ago, and shows a nation that increasingly tolerates and even celebrates the hopes and aspirations of gay people. VOA’s Michael Bowman spoke to a same-sex couple that will benefit from the high court ruling, and to a Christian scholar who is apprehensive about its potential consequences for America’s faith community.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Syrian Refugees Return to Tal Abyad

Syrian refugees in Turkey confirm they left their hometown of Tal Abyad because of intense fighting and coalition airstrikes, not because Kurdish fighters were engaged in ethnic cleansing, as some Turkish officials charged. VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer, in Tal Abyad, finds that civilians coming back to the town agree, as we hear in this report narrated by Roger Wilkison.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Chemical-Sniffing Technology Fights Australia's Graffiti Vandals

Cities and towns all over the world spend huge amounts of resources battling graffiti writers who deface buildings, public transport vehicles and even monuments. Authorities in Sydney, Australia, hope a new chemical-sniffing technology finally will stop vandals from scribbling on walls in the passenger areas of commuter trains. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Cambodia Struggling to Curb Child Labor

Earlier this year a United Nations report found 10 percent of Cambodian children aged 7-14 are working – one of the highest rates in the region – and said one in four children in that age bracket are forced to quit school to help their families. Although the child labor rate has dropped over the past decade, Cambodia has a lot more to do – including keeping more children in school. Robert Carmichael reports for VOA from Phnom Penh.

VOA Blogs