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

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As tumult in Middle East distracts Obama administration, efforts to shift American focus eastward appear threatened 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.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid