News / Africa

South Sudan President Fires Army Chief

Chief of Staff of South Sudan's army, General James Hoth Mai, was fired by President Salva Kirr. The general is shown speaking to media in Juba January 2, 2014.
Chief of Staff of South Sudan's army, General James Hoth Mai, was fired by President Salva Kirr. The general is shown speaking to media in Juba January 2, 2014.
Charlton Doki
— South Sudanese President Salva Kiir has fired his army chief and the head of military intelligence, days after key towns in oil-producing Unity state were captured by opposition forces and fresh fighting flared up in the flashpoint states of Jonglei and Upper Nile.

In a presidential decree read on state television late Wednesday, Kiir announced that he has replaced his army chief of staff, General James Hoth Mai, with the Northern Bahr el Ghazal state governor, Paul Malong Awan, and named General Marial Nour Jok the new head of military intelligence replacing Major General Mac Paul Kuol.

No reasons were given for the sudden firings, which came as fighting continued in parts of the country, including Unity and the main oil-producing state, Upper Nile.

Opposition forces captured Bentiu, the capital of Unity state, last week and on Monday they claimed they had seized the town of Mayom, also in Unity state.

But army spokesman, Colonel Philip Aguer, said government troops were still fighting for control of Mayom.


Rebels claim control of town near Palouge

 

Both sides also claimed to be in control of  the strategic town of Renk in Upper Nile, the state where most of South Sudan's oil is produced.

Opposition spokesman James Gatdet Dak said opposition forces seized control of Renk on Wednesday and were continuing their push into government-held territory in Upper Nile.

Pipelines criss-cross at the Palouge oil field in South Sudan.
Pipelines criss-cross at the Palouge oil field in South Sudan.



“We still maintain control of Renk and our forces are moving toward Palouge, which is the main oil field in Upper Nile state,” the opposition spokesman said.

"The reports that we are receiving from the ground is that the government is losing ground," Gatdet added.
 
But Aguer insisted the SPLA was still in control in Renk.

"The rebels were fighting inside Renk," said Aguer. "They did not overtake it, but they managed to infiltrate and some defectors from the police helped them but they were flushed out from the town by the SPLA forces."

"So, since yesterday, Renk is in the control of the SPLA forces,” he said.


Government vows to hold oil fields


Aguer vowed that government forces would stand in the way of a rebel takeover of South Sudan's oil fields.

"That is the dream of Riek Machar and his forces -- to either destroy the oil industry or control it or divert it. To whom, we don’t know," the opposition's Aguer said.

"But the SPLA ... is there in Palouge, in Adar and all the other oil fields, and we will protect the oil fields. There is no doubt about that.”

The World Bank has described South Sudan as "the most oil-dependent country in the world." Oil accounts for almost all of the country's exports and around 80 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), or the market value of all goods and services produced in a country in a year.

The opposition has said the government is using oil revenues to buy weapons, and has reportedly launched an offensive to seize control of the country's oil fields and production facilities to prevent this from happening.
 

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
April 24, 2014 7:17 PM
s.sudan live together peacefully and build a very rich nation.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
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.
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.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid