News / Africa

S. Sudan Government, Rebels Trade Blame for Violence

Rebel fighters listen to their commander in rebel-controlled territory in Upper Nile State, Feb. 15, 2014.
Rebel fighters listen to their commander in rebel-controlled territory in Upper Nile State, Feb. 15, 2014.
Gabe Joselow
Fighting has broken out between the South Sudanese military and rebel forces in the capital of oil-producing Upper Nile state. Each is blaming the other for the hostilities.

Army spokesman Philip Aguer told VOA rebel forces attacked government positions in the north of Malakal early Tuesday and fighting continued into the day.

Both sides had agreed to stop fighting as part of a ceasefire deal signed last month in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

Aguer said the latest violence compromises that agreement and the continuation of talks.

“They are attacking Malakal while people are discussing in Addis.  So this is a serious violation,” he said.

Clashes erupted across the country in December, after an outbreak of violence in the capital and government accusations of a coup attempt, allegedly led by former Vice President Riek Machar.

The city of Malakal was seized by rebel forces during weeks of fighting that followed, but was reclaimed by government forces in January.

Malakal is the capital of Upper Nile state, which produces the bulk of South Sudan's oil, the lifeblood of the country's economy.

Speaking to VOA by telephone from Addis Ababa, opposition forces spokesman Lul Ruai Koang blamed the government for the resumption of fighting in the city.

He said the rebels responded to government attacks Tuesday and pursued military forces back to their strongholds near the airport north of the city.

“We are not trying to reclaim control," Koang said. "We had actually been in partial control of Malakal.  What had been a problem was that they had been attacking us from these places, harassing civilians and stealing their property and food.  So we thought it was time for us to clear these pockets of resistance.”

Talks were to resume in Addis Ababa last week, but were postponed due to a rebel demand for the release of four remaining political detainees arrested early in the crisis.

Thousands of people have been killed in the conflict, and more than 850,000 have been displaced.

You May Like

For Lebanon-based Refugees, Desperation Fuels Perilous Passage

In a war that has caused an estimated three million people to flee Syria, efforts to make perilous sea journey in search of asylum expected to increase More

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change

Mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to climate summit in Peru, says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change More

Indonesia Reports Increase in Citizens Joining Islamic State

Officials say more than 350 of its citizens are now in Syria or Iraq to fight with Islamic State - 50 more than last month 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.
Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countriesi
X
December 16, 2014 2:14 PM
Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.
Video

Video Indonesian Province to Expand Sharia Law

Indonesia has the world’s largest Muslim population and a legal system based on Dutch civil law and Indonesian government regulations. But in a 2001 compromise with separatists, Aceh province in Sumatra island’s north was allowed to implement Sharia law. Since then, religious justice has become increasingly strict. VOA correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh.
Video

Video Some Russian Businesses Thrive in Poor Economy

Capital flight, the fall in oil prices and Western sanctions are pushing Russia's staggering economy into recession. But not companies are suffering. The ruble’s drop in value has benefited exporters as well as businesses targeting increasingly frugal customers. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.

All About America

AppleAndroid