News / Africa

    South Sudan Free to Purchase Weapons Says Army Spokesman

    SPLA spokesman Philip Aguer, shown here at a briefing in March 2012, says South Sudanese Army soldiers have killed more than two dozen members of David Yau Yau's rebel group. (AP)
    SPLA spokesman Philip Aguer, shown here at a briefing in March 2012, says South Sudanese Army soldiers have killed more than two dozen members of David Yau Yau's rebel group. (AP)
    Peter Clottey
    The spokesman for South Sudan’s national army says President Salva Kiir’s government has no restrictions to purchase weapons from its international partners to protect lives and property as enshrined in the country’s constitution.

    Colonel Philip Aguer says the army will protect unarmed civilians in the country’s conflict to enable officials of the government to continue with peace negotiations with the rebels to resolve the crisis.

    “The government is capable of interacting with any political entity in the world including Egypt.  But the procurement is the business of the government so wherever they get the weapons should not be an accusation,” said Aguer.  “The government is capable of getting weapons from anywhere.  There [are] no restrictions on the government of South Sudan on where to buy and where to get weapons.”

    His comments came after rebels allied to former vice president Riek Machar accused neighboring Egypt of providing military support to the government in Juba.  They contend that Egypt’s military support could regionalize the conflict and exacerbate the crisis.

    The rebels say the government in Juba appears to be disinterested in the ongoing peace negotiations to resolve the conflict by seeking military support from Egypt.  But Aguer disagreed.

    “The government is entitled to protect and provide the security of the citizens and the integrity of the republic of South Sudan,” said Aguer.  “It is when the rebels get weapons when it should be questioned because the rebels have no legal mandate to get weapons elsewhere.  However, we have not talked about weapons their sources of weapons.  We know they are dealing with some [people] around the region.”

    Aguer declined to name the entities he says supply weapons to the rebels.  He admits, however that the rebels could get their arms supply from the black market.

    But the rebels say the government lacks goodwill in the peace negotiations by seeking military support to combat allies of the former vice president.

    Aguer disagreed.  He says the national army needs the supply of weapons to carry out its duties.

    “The duty and constitutional responsibility of the army is to provide protection to the integrity of South Sudan to the people and their property.  If we need weapons to do that constitutional mandate then we do that while the government negotiates political settlement,” said Aguer.  “We are sure the conflict is a political issue that was taken very far.  The politicians should have resolved the political problem away from violence.”

    Some South Sudanese have called for more targeted sanctions on both sides of the conflict following President Barack Obama’s recent executive order that paved the way for U.S. sanctions on anyone threatening the stability of South Sudan, as well as those committing human-rights abuses.

    Aguer says the army is not to blame for the country’s crisis. 

    “The rebels have rejected the cessation of hostilities and they have continued attacking Malakal attacking Duke County with the interest to capture the oil fields [and] that is direct rejection of peace,” said Aguer.  “Why do you look for other people that are obstructing peace if somebody announcing that they are not for cessation of hostilities?”                                                       
    Aguer says the government is committed to the peace talks as the army continues to protect civilians from rebel attacks.
    Clottey Interview with Col. Philip Aguer, South Sudan Army Spokeperson
    Clottey Interview with Col. Philip Aguer, South Sudan Army Spokepersoni
    || 0:00:00
    ...    
     
    X

    You May Like

    Russia Sees Brexit Impact Widespread but Temporary

    Officials, citizens react to Britain’s vote to exit European Union with mix of pleasure, understanding and concern

    Obama Encourages Entrepreneurs to Seek Global Interconnection

    President tells entrepreneurs at global summit at Stanford University to find mentors, push ahead with new ideas on day after Britain voters decide to exit EU

    Video Some US Gun Owners Support Gun Control

    Defying the stereotype, Dave Makings says he'd give up his assault rifle for a comprehensive program to reduce gun violence

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: jimmy wan from: Juba
    April 16, 2014 2:08 PM
    Thanks and tribute to the S P LM a lot for all the stand against the wide army rebels towards the attempted coup SPLM is the ruling part for christ seek how possible is it to be intimidated by a rebel on how to procure weapons of defending the country during such insecurities in the country caused by fear Sudan's if he has points of defend why cant they accept the peace talks and settle issues at once than putting on treats on a ruling power.

    by: Deng Luak from: from Malakal
    April 16, 2014 12:04 PM
    I dont there will be money to purchases the weapons any ways. I quer dont understand that we cannot purchase the weapons too. That would be scaring tactic and I dont it will work at this times.

    by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
    April 14, 2014 12:56 AM
    Please, for the sake of our LORD, do not purchase any weapons of mass destruction. African children, women and innocent civilians do not deserve to be killed with chemical weapons.
    Just have a look what's happening in Syria.

    May God bless and protect the people of South Sudan.
    In Response

    by: Arbow Herow from: Kenya
    April 15, 2014 3:49 AM
    Good point!

    by: David from: U.S.
    April 13, 2014 7:28 PM
    Mr. Aguer: can only tells the truth when he force to. All of these politicians do not understand why the country is call country. They have no patriotic fashion for home country and the people. All they care for is their own interest and leadership. How would not care about the people whose you to be leader? America should deliver more sanction on these ignorant leaders.

    by: wnyin from: canada
    April 13, 2014 6:59 PM
    South Sudanese are tired of trying to explain that the rebels, led by Riek Machar, were and are still the one who wrought mass murders since Dec 15, 2013. It clearly shows, as many wise individuals know, there is some fishy thing going on. With Satalites, on ground spies, and so forth, though it denies any knowledge of the happening in South Sudan,rush for sanctions USA, shown a clear intentions to changing the current regime in South Sudan, without any attention to the outcomes, so that their policies aren't compromised. South Sudan's government isn't USA's enemy. I hope they don't make the same mistake as they were in cahoots [With Arabs] throughout their failed attempts to destroy the Jews State, from 1948 - 1973. And maybe today as it is shown from the quick respond to any European or Arabs crises, in contrast to their lack of good will to safe innocence lives in Africa. You've just lost friends forever. Had a single condamnation went forth out of USA's mouth, it could've spared more than 10,000, since the start of this failed coup in Dec 15, 2013.

    by: Nyakor from: USA
    April 13, 2014 5:30 PM
    I wish you, Aguer and your friend Kiir would have sympathy, if not I hope you find a way to have it. You don't realize what you are doing now, even people who are still alive live as if they were dead, because you affected their lives very strongly. The statement that you made , "the govt doesn't have restriction to buy guns anywhere so that they could protect the citizens" is false and dumb. There are no civilians that are being saved from your killings. The only good people now that are helping and protecting the citizens is The UN. The little bit of life that the citizens have under the UN is not your will at all, if you had a chance to get them, you would just eat them alive- you and your friend Kiir. Put this in your mind, your friend Kiir paid you enough, God only gives bad people a chance the first time, use the name of govt in anyway that you want to use it while you are on the top of the world, it is just a matter of time. Use it while you are there in that moment. Don't forget to remind one another how your brothers who did the same things as you are doing now, Saddam Hussein, Hitler, Osama, Mussolini, Pol Pot, and Idid Amin- none of these people are with us now. On a farm, if you have a very crazy cow with dangerous horns, the owner cuts the horns off in order to protect other people's lives. Put it in your minds that your horns will be cut off soon, I don't know by who, but God knows because what you have done is enough. God Bless

    by: John from: USA
    April 13, 2014 4:24 PM
    "the government is entitled to protect and provide the security of the citizens and the integrity of the republic of south sudan, said aguer.

    Philip contradicted himself on this interview. Is there any protection in Juba? Or did Philip meant protecting Dinka in Juba? People are fighting now because their relatives were killed like fishes in Juba by the same government that is contradicting itself in the media. Who killed Nuer civilians in December 15-19, 2013 and now still going on? The government is killing Nuer people where rebel leader belongs. WIth Kir still sitting as the president some of you like Philip will be shot soon on the head.
    In Response

    by: william from: south sudan
    April 14, 2014 10:41 AM
    I am wonder, how you people thinking about this crises. my word to all of you is like this : who ever or had come to s Sudan from the beginning to source of dispute ? those of nyakor or what ever you called your self, second to it is : why don't America overthrown Barack ? derisions comments, I hate you. you are were the one supporting Riak with every thing just to kill so that his will be written in history of south Sudan. may God judged it . I hope even kangaroo court can not charge Kiir with any

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora