News / Africa

South Sudan Denies Losing ‘Malakal Town’ to Rebels

South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar speaks to rebel General Peter Gatdet Yaka (not seen) in a rebel controlled territory in Jonglei State, Feb. 1, 2014.
South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar speaks to rebel General Peter Gatdet Yaka (not seen) in a rebel controlled territory in Jonglei State, Feb. 1, 2014.
Peter Clottey
The spokesman for South Sudan’s military is denying reports that government troops have lost Malakal after contact with officers was lost due to network problems, following clashes with rebels allied to former South Sudan vice president Riek Machar.

Colonel Philip Aguer also denied reports that the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) plans to attack Pariang, a village close to the Sudan border, believed to be one of the hideouts of Mr. Machar.

“It was not losing contact because of anything. The network in Malakal is not working and we were simply unable to trace our people, but we are in contact with them,” said Aguer. “We have not lost control of Malakal. Malakal is now being fought for. The SPLA is controlling the northern part of Malakal town and the rebels and armed civilians are in the southern part of the town.”

Both the government and the rebels accuse each other of violating the cessation of hostilities agreement signed between the two groups at peace negotiations in Ethiopia.

News reports say the SPLA attacked the rebels in Leer, the birth place of Machar two days after the cease-fire was signed in neighboring Ethiopia. But, Aguer says the rebels are to blame for attacking the army positions.

“The SPLA was around the areas of Leer before the cessation of hostilities. The force in [national army] Division four was divided [and] most of them joined the rebels so that that is not true that the SPLA did not respect the cessation of hostilities agreement,” said Aguer.

He says the rebels are to blame for their refusal to abide by the stipulations of the cease-fire agreement.

“We are respecting the cessation of hostilities agreements that are being initiated by the AU [African Union],” said Aguer. “The rebels in Upper Nile publicly declared that they are not working with the cessation of hostilities agreement. That is a clear disregard to the cessation of hostilities agreement.” 

Aguer also denied reports that the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) plans to attack Pariang, a village close to the Sudan border, believed to be one of the hideouts of Mr. Machar.

“How could SPLA attack Pariang? Pariang is in the hands of the SPLA since the rebellion. The rebels attacked Pariang more than 10 times. Maybe somebody is talking of something they don’t know,” he said.

Aguer also says the government remains committed to the cessation of hostilities agreement in spite of criticism that the national army has been undermining the agreement.

“This is why we requested that the mediators in Addis Ababa should have a monitoring mechanism so that they don’t allow the rebels to say whatever they are saying, which is unrealistic,” said Aguer.
Clottey interview with Col. Philip Aguer, South Sudan military spokesman
Clottey interview with Col. Philip Aguer, South Sudan military spokesmani
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?i
X
Henry Ridgwell
August 29, 2014 12:26 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid