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

VOA Exclusive: Interview With Myanmar President Thein Sein

Thein Sein calls allegations that minority Muslim Rohingya are fleeing alleged torture in Rakhine state a media fabrication More

Video Better Protective Suit Sought for Ebola Caregivers

Current suit is uncomfortable, requires too many steps for removal, increasing chance of deadly contact with virus More

UN Rights Commission Investigates Eritrea

Three-member commission will start collecting first-hand information from victims and other witnesses in Switzerland and Italy next week 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.
Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concernsi
X
November 19, 2014 11:39 PM
The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.
Video

Video What Jon Stewart Learned About Iran From 'Rosewater'

Jon Stewart, host of the satirical news program "The Daily Show" talks with Saman Arbabi of Voice of America's Persian service about Stewart's directorial debut, "Rosewater."
Video

Video Lebanese Winemakers Thrive Despite War Next Door

In some of the most volatile parts of Lebanon, where a constant flow of refugees crosses the border from Syria, one industry continues to flourish against the odds. Lebanese winemakers say after surviving a brutal civil war in the 1970s and 80s, they can survive anything. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.
Video

Video China's Rise Closely Watched

China’s role as APEC host this week allowed a rare opportunity for Beijing to showcase its vision for the global economy and the region. But as China’s stature grows, so have tensions with other countries, including the United States. VOA’s Bill Ide in Beijing reports on how China’s rise as a global power is seen among Chinese and Americans.

All About America

AppleAndroid