News / Africa

Uganda Considers Troop Withdrawal from South Sudan

Uganda People's Defense Force pass through Bor in Jonglei State in mid-January. Uganda insists their presence assured the security of Ugandan citizens and humanitarian services in the two-month internal conflict.
Uganda People's Defense Force pass through Bor in Jonglei State in mid-January. Uganda insists their presence assured the security of Ugandan citizens and humanitarian services in the two-month internal conflict.
Peter Clottey
Uganda’s Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa says troops from the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF) currently fighting rebels in neighboring South Sudan will be withdrawn beginning in April.

Uganda has come under pressure from some countries in the region as well as from Washington to withdraw its troops from South Sudan.

Fred Opolot, spokesman for Uganda’s foreign ministry, denies the proposed troop pull-out was in response to pressure on the government in Kampala.

He says the proposal for a pull-out follows consultations with the government in Juba, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and the African Union (AU), which plans to send in replacement troops to help stabilize the security situation in South Sudan.

“Uganda has no desire to keep our troops on South Sudan soil unnecessarily," said Opolot. "It is within that context that Uganda has proposed - with the agreement of the South Sudan government - on the deployment of the African capacity for immediate response to the crisis that was agreed [upon] at the AU."

South Sudan’s violence has left thousands dead and hundreds of thousands displaced from their homes.

Uganda opposition groups have criticized the government for the troop deployment saying they have turned UPDF troops into mercenaries. 

The charges came after the South Sudan defense minister admitted the government in Juba is paying Uganda for its troops helping to fight the rebellion.

Opolot strongly disagrees. “Uganda [UPDF] is not a mercenary force. Uganda went to South Sudan [because] the security situation in the country was deteriorating. In fact, at the time that Uganda was going in, there was an urgent need to prevent a potentially genocidal situation, which was arising out of the crisis.

“Certainly Uganda was assisting South Sudan open humanitarian corridors to allow food and other relief supplies.”

Uganda’s government initially said it deployed troops to South Sudan to secure the airport to allow for the evacuation of Ugandan citizens and other foreign nationals trapped there due to the conflict.

But, South Sudan’s former vice president, Riek Machar, accused UPDF troops of interfering in the country’s internal affairs when Ugandan troops fought alongside the national army to attack rebel positions.

Sudan demanded the withdrawallast week of UPDF forces when a Sudanese military official said the presence of Uganda’s troop’s in South Sudan poses a threat to its national security as well as a destabilizing effect on the entire region.

Again Opolot disagreed. “Sudan can say whatever it wants. IGAD has only reiterated that at one point there would have to be a progressive withdrawal of allied forces in South Sudan. It did not mean only Ugandan forces should withdraw.”       
Clottey interview with Fred Opolot, Uganda foreign ministry spokesman
Clottey interview with Fred Opolot, Uganda foreign ministry spokesmani
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

FIFA Indictments Put Gold Cup Tournament Under Cloud

Experts say US indictments could lead to charges of other world soccer officials, and lead to major shakeup in sport's governance More

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

At a recent even in Seoul, border communities promoted benefits of increased cooperation and North Korean defectors shared stories of life since the war More

Video VOA EXCLUSIVE: Iraq President Vows to Fight IS 'Until They Are Killed or We Die'

In wide-ranging interview with VOA Persian service reporter, Fuad Masum describes conflict as new type of fight that will take time to win More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: manyang john from: bor jonglei state
March 04, 2014 6:24 AM
Well the present of updf in s /sudan has help many people's lives especally in bor though the un want updf to withdraw anfortnately they are not being paid for the job well done

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardshipi
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
May 28, 2015 6:48 PM
Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Floodwaters Recede in Houston, but Rain Continues

Many parts of Texas are recovering from one of the worst natural disasters to hit the southwestern state. Heavy rains on Monday and early Tuesday caused rivers to swell in eastern and central Texas, washing away homes and killing at least 13 people. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, floodwaters are receding slowly in the country's fourth-largest city, and there likely is to be more rain in the coming days.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video US Voters Seek Answers From Presidential Candidates on IS Gains

The growth of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria comes as the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign kicks off in the Midwest state of Iowa.   As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, voters want to know how the candidates would handle recent militant gains in the Middle East.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.

VOA Blogs