August 30, 2012 (BOR) - Rebels led by David Yauyau attacked the South Sudan Army (SPLA) in Pibor County in south western Jonglei State at around noon local time on Thursday.
- Jonglei State Governor Kuol Manyang Juuk announces the new attacks by David Yauyau’s rebels in his office in Bor, 30 August 2012 (ST)
Last week around 40 SPLA soldiers were killed and others injured by an attack on the rebel militia group in Pibor County’s Lekuangole Payam [district], according to officials who visited the area.
Jonglei State’s governor summoned the press to his office on Thursday afternoon to announce the attack, which also took place in the Lekuangole area.
Mayang, who visited Lekuangole on Wednesday said the Army was on alert because the rebels sent a message to locals to move out of the area.
The fighting was ongoing, he said, "how it will end, we don’t know yet”, governor Manyang said.
The Jonglei Governor repeated South Sudan’s regular allegation that Yauyau is being backed by the Sudanese government in Khartoum, suggesting that the rebels have helicopters hidden in the bush which are used to rearm the rebels.
Manyang said that the only place Yauyau’s rebel militia group could receive arms from was Khartoum. Since South Sudan’s independence last year Juba has consistently accused Sudan of the young country’s various rebellions to undermine it’s southern region. Khartoum accuses Juba of backing rebels north of the new international border in Sudan.
South Sudan took with it 75% of Sudan’s oil when it seceded, as part of a 2005 peace deal that ended decades of civil war. However neither country has benefited from South Sudan’s oil since January when South Sudan stopped production as part of a dispute with Khartoum over transportation fees.
The Sudanese government “want to prove to the world that South Sudanese cannot rule themselves”, Manyang said. The Army has been instructed to deal with Yauyau’s rebellion militarily.
Yauyau first rebelled after he failed to become a representative for the Pibor area in the April 2010 elections. He rejoined the government in 2011 only to relaunch his rebellion in April 2012.
He accused Khartoum and the country’s rebels of planning “to turn South Sudan into another Somalia in the heart of Africa”.
Governor Manyang warned the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMISS), UN agencies and humanitarian organisations of aggregating what he described “unverified human rights and other negative reports ” which are not verified by the government.
The reports found that the Murle, from which Yauyau hails tribe, were the victims of rape, torture and killing by some of the strong 15,000 forces carrying out a disarmament campaign in Jonglei.
The disarmament process was launched after large scale clashes between the Murle and the Luo Nuer tribe in 2011 and the start of 2012.