News / Africa

'Matter of Time' Before Army Retakes Bentiu, South Sudan Official Says

A Sudanese man carries a bed past South Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) national army soldiers patroling the town of Bentiu following its capture, Jan. 12, 2014.
A Sudanese man carries a bed past South Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) national army soldiers patroling the town of Bentiu following its capture, Jan. 12, 2014.
Charlton Doki
— A South Sudan army spokesman said Tuesday it was "a matter of time" before government forces regain control of Bentiu and another town in Unity state that have fallen to rebel forces.

"Unity state in general is a fighting area and it’s just a matter of time that the SPLA will re-establish control of Unity state or these areas of Bentiu and Mayom," said Colonel Philip Aguer, a spokesman for the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA).

"Things will change soon,” he said.

Forces opposed to the government of President Salva Kiir last week overran Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, and on Monday said they captured the town of Mayom on the border with Warrap state.

The U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) on Monday accused the rebels of singling out people who were hiding during the fighting in Bentiu and killing them based on their ethnicity or nationality.

Aguer called what the rebels allegedly did "barbarism" and said the SPLA will do all it can to dislodge the rebels from areas they control.

“The SPLA is mandated by the constitution to stop those acts of barbarism. And it’s just a matter of time that the SPLA will control the area,” Aguer said. He said the SPLA is still in control of Unity state's oil fields. 

Rebels seek to shut down government oil production

Rebels say they want to shut down crude production to prevent the government spending the country's largest source of revenue on weapons. 

Lul Ruai Koang, an opposition spokesman, said anti-government troops have fanned out and captured several positions in Jonglei state, including the administrative headquarters of Duk county.

Koang also accused government forces of destroying bridges and other infrastructure in Unity state to try to prevent the rebels advancing beyond Mayom and Bentiu.

Aguer dismissed the allegation.

"It’s the rebels that have intentions to blow up bridges. They want to cover up their activities,” he said.

The recent increase in violence in Unity state has resulted in a sharp rise in the number of South Sudanese seeking shelter at U.N. facilities.

Joe Contreras, the acting spokesman for UNMISS, said there were around 12,000 people sheltering at the base in Bentiu last week, compared to around 4,000 at the start of the month when South Sudan peace talks were put on hold.

The talks are due to resume on Monday after a four-week break. The international community has warned that South Sudan is on the verge of famine if the fighting is not stopped immediately and aid allowed to get through to people in need.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mario Manyuon from: Juba
April 23, 2014 9:18 AM
The solution to South Sudan's problem is that, every family should convince their young not to take against individual or a any group.


by: Deng Tut from: Addis baba
April 23, 2014 4:42 AM
Greedy of power is a problem to whole African Nation and AU is not protecting the civilians but the leaders.
South Sudan's conflict is a simple issue but the IGAD is making business on it and the Government has not intends to kill his people and the Rebels are for destruction to take us back in 18c.
The government and Rebels are continues gambling on their usual business.
God is looking at them.


by: Human Eaters from: Juba
April 23, 2014 4:34 AM
The SPLA spokesman always saying that matter of time and everyday matter of time but Rebels don't says matter of time they just captured Towns without consider time.
If the government is not able to provide security to people then it is good for government's leadership to resign instead of wasting resources and life of civilians .

In Response

by: Atak Atem from: U.S.A. IA
April 23, 2014 2:48 PM
is it not passive obedience to the Reik Machar's policy to those who are backers him ? I think what happened at Unite State was actually a good news to the rebel's backers. To me the Kiir administration must do something important to protect people. Kiir should not resign as other people said. What happened not only in south Sudan,but it happened everywhere for instance , Libya , Syria etc. but those leaders non of them resigned. And no one of these rebel or protests got full freedom or step down any their leaders what they needed since 2011.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid