News / Africa

South Sudan Treason Trial Resumes

Defendants (L-R) Oyay Deng Ajak, Pagan Amum, Majok D'Agot Atem, and Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.
Defendants (L-R) Oyay Deng Ajak, Pagan Amum, Majok D'Agot Atem, and Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.
Philip Aleu
The trial of four South Sudanese politicians accused of treason for their role in an alleged coup attempt against President Salva Kiir in December resumed Thursday in Juba.

The hearing was adjourned last week when prosecutors told the court they wanted seven other politicians, who were released to the custody of Kenyan authorities in January, to return to South Sudan and face trial.

The seven former detainees have not returned to Juba and were not in court on Thursday. James Mayen, the lead prosecutor, asked the five judges to adjourn the hearing again until they return to South Sudan.

But presiding judge James Alala ruled that the trial should go ahead. He said another delay would deny the four men who are in court their right to justice.

Lead defense lawyer Monytuil Alor said he was pleased with the judge's decision.

"It went our way, in the sense that the prosecution wanted to delay the trial on the grounds that the seven were not brought, and they wanted to wait for the seven. We objected to that vigorously and we asked the court to continue the trial of the four, which the court approved,” he said.

Mayen declined to speak to reporters at the hearing.

On Thursday the prosecution called two witnesses, including the commander of the presidential guard, Marial Chanuon.

He testified that the four politicians in the dock -- former Security Minister Oyay Deng Ajak, former SPLM Secretary General Pagan Amum, former Deputy Defense Minister Majok D'Agot Atem, and the former top envoy of the Southern Sudan government in Washington, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth -- were part of a group suspected of instigating the fighting that erupted in Juba on December 15.

Chanuon said that on the day the fighting began, soldiers ignored his orders and broke into the armory at the headquarters of South Sudan's ground forces to take weapons.

Chanuon also testified that 76 senior officers and 730 soldiers failed to turn up for morning parade the day after the violence started. They are believed to have rebelled, he said.

Attorney Alor said the defense will cross-examine the prosecution witnesses on Friday before they present their own case.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Arkangelo kuol from: Warrap
March 21, 2014 2:15 PM
Four were being misled by power hungry, RIAK claiming that he is well educated more than nobody in S.Sudan which i can't see,education of killing one own elderly,children and women of the same country let them deserves what were looking for while are the richest of all.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More