News / Africa

Rebels Advancing on Flashpoint Town, South Sudan Says

South Sudan army soldiers stand next to a destroyed motorcycle near Bor Airport, northwest of capital Juba on December 25, 2013.
South Sudan army soldiers stand next to a destroyed motorcycle near Bor Airport, northwest of capital Juba on December 25, 2013.
VOA News
South Sudan's military says rebels are moving toward a flashpoint town, as hopes fade that a cease-fire deadline will be met.

Army spokesman Philip Aguer told reporters Monday that rebel troops are advancing on the Jonglei state capital of Bor. Reuters news agency quotes Aguer as saying that shootings have taken place just outside the town.

A spokesman for the U.N. mission in South Sudan, Joseph Contreras, says that the United Nations is extremely concerned about reports of large numbers of armed youth advancing toward Bor.

"We see their reported advance in the general direction of Bor as a very troubling development," Contreras said. "Armed youths of various ethnic backgrounds in Jonglei state have been at the center of much of the intercommunal fighting that has plagued South Sudan since the country became independent two and-a-half years ago.

Earlier Monday, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said East African nations have warned South Sudanese rebel leader Riek Machar to sign a cease-fire deal or face action by regional nations.

Museveni, who met South Sudanese President Salva Kiir in South Sudan's capital, Juba, Monday, said Machar has been given four days to respond to the offer.

"We gave Riek Machar some four days to respond and if he doesn't we shall have to go for him, all of, " said the Ugandan presidnet. "That is what we agreed in Nairobi.''

Regional leaders are pressing for face-to-face talks between Kiir and Machar, his deposed vice president, by December 31.

Uganda says it has troops stationed at Juba's international airport tasked with "facilitating evacuation of civilians," but United Nations workers in the city say the forces are more widely deployed. Mr. Museveni and Mr. Kiir are strong allies.

The United Nations says U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Kiir Monday and welcomed the president's commitment to a cease-fire. He also urged Kiir to consider the early release of political prisoners.

The medical aid group Doctors Without Borders said Monday tens of thousands of South Sudanese have fled Bor since violence broke out there last week between government troops and the Machar-backed force, known as the "White Army."

White Army youths are known for the white powder they use to cover their skin as an insect repellant. Like Machar, they are ethnic Nuers while President Kiir and his loyalists are ethnic Dinka.

The tribal violence erupted earlier this month, when the president accused Machar of attempting a coup. The United Nations says the fighting has left more than 1,000 people dead and displaced tens of thousands.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama Defends Immigration Action

Obama says with his executive action on immigration, enforcement resources will be focused on 'felons, not families; criminals, not children' More

US-Led Airstrikes in Syria Kill Over 900: Monitoring Group

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the toll includes more than 50 civilians, five of them women and eight of them children More

Report: Obama Broadens US Combat Role in Afghanistan

The New York Times says resident Barack Obama has signed a classified order extending the role of US troops in Afghanistan for another year More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: oturo from: Naks
December 30, 2013 11:43 AM
South Sudan's issue needs be handled with a lot of care. It is a replica of Kenya in early 80s. Worst is to supervise it to Kenya of 1990's. It is nothing but 'killing of the learned.' Consequence is retrogression in development. Proposed solution is open and sincere listening to Machar and other learned fellows in that country, cautious involvement of those who were in Kenyan leadership in 1980s and above all stoppage of ethnic interpretation of situation in terms of Dinka&Nuer interests.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
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.

All About America

AppleAndroid