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SPLM-IO says Gen Koryom has defected for health reasons

December 29, 2017 (JUBA)-The deputy spokesperson of the armed opposition allied to the former South Sudan Vice President Riek Machar, has confirmed the defection of Gen.Wang Chiok Koryom to the SPLA-IO under Taban Deng Gai.

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Lt. General Wang Chiok Koryom (C) speaks to the press in Juba on 29 December 2017 (ST Photo)

Col. Lam Paul Gabriel told Sudan Tribune that Gen. Koryom has abandoned their camp and decide to switch sides to the Juba government because of what he alleged health problems.

“The SPLA-IO would like to acknowledge the defection of Lt. Gen Wang to the regime in Juba as of today the 29/12/2017. Gen. Wang was one of the bravest Generals the SPLA-IO has. His defection came as a result of his current health condition that cannot allow him to perform his usual duties as a commander,” he said on Friday

He added SPLA-IO welcome his decision, stressing that it is an individual position that would not hamper their activities on the ground.

“We thank him for his services and wish him a quick recovery. It should, however, be noted that the defection of Gen Wang has no negative effect on the SPLA-IO as we will continue to resist the criminal government until a genuine peace is attained politically or militarily,” he added.

VIOLATIONS OF COH IN BIEH STATE

Meanwhile, he accused the government of violating a cessation of hostility around Bieh State, and surrounded areas in the Unity region, on Thursday.

“The Government forces left their position in Yuai and attacked our base in Payai, but they were repulsed by the SPLA-IO. This aggression continued this morning of 29 December 2017 at around 7:00 Am as they launched another attack on our position in Paditet Payam”.

He claimed the government forces are planning to launch a full-scale attack on the SPLA-IO positions of in Equatoria, Bar El Gazal and Upper Nile after the high military command meeting in Juba on December 27.

The rebel spokesperson further said the government is despatching SPLA troops from Bor to attack an SPLA-IO base in Ayod.

“Secondly, the government forces are also being organized in Torit to start attacking SPLA-IO positions in Imotong State,” he said.

However, the rebel official said their forces will not stand idly while the government plans for dry season attacks on their territories.

A ceasefire deal was reached between the South Sudanese warring parties on December 21, in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to pave way for peace revitalization forum in the coming next year, but both sides have trade accusation for the cessation of hostility violations.

(ST)