South Sudan: Warring Factions Fear Imminent Attacks on Malakal of Upper Nile

Malakal, the capital of South Sudan's Upper Nile State(Photo: SouthSudan4Jesus)

Malakal, the capital of South Sudan’s Upper Nile State(Photo: SouthSudan4Jesus)

Sept 8, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — After six days of heavy battles along the West Bank, a region that has been largely controlled by the armed opposition, South Sudan government fears heavy repercussions on its stronghold of Malakal, the capital of the oil-rich Upper Nile state.

Speaking in the national capital, Juba, the Military Spokesman of government troops, Colonel Philip Aguer, reports that the rebels are closing-in from multiple directions

“As per yesterday, the 7th of this month, rebel commanders Mabor Dhol, Tanginye and Johnson Olony have gathered more than 15 hundreds, 1, 500, armaments at the Canal mouth, Khorfulus and in the Western Part of the River Nile west of Malakal town.” Col. Philip Aguer told reporters in Juba, South Sudan.

According to Philip Aguer, the intention of the rebels is to attack and capture Malakal town.

“And the attack will start from the Southern and Norther Part of Malakal town, from the southern side of Malakal that is from the Canal Mouth and Dolep Hill. The forces are under “spiritual commander” Dak Kueth, the Kujur and from the direction of Lalo, Warjuok by Johnson Olony that is targeting to capture Malakal airport” Aguer added.

Aguer also believes that similar preparations are taking place in Unity State to capture Nhialdiu, a town that has exchanged hands more than three times.

According to SPLM/SPLA[IO] and UNMISS reports, government ground troops and Ugandan air-force have been leading major offensives and bombardments on both civilians and rebels bases in Shilluck Kingdom.

Within the last four days, the SPLA-IO military spokesmen in Upper Nile state have issued more than five press briefings calling on Juba and Ugandan governments to respect the Permanent Ceasefire Agreement, a call that was downplayed by the SPLA-Juba military and government spokespersons Col. Philip Aguer and Michael Makuei Lueth.

According to reliable sources from Pangak of Phow State, “SPLA-IO will be forced to re-capture Malakal” to cut off government military supplies that are used to attack civilians in Shilluck Kingdom.

Continued Battles in Wajwok and Lelo

According to Brig. Gen. Nyagwal Ajak Dengkak, the military spokesman of Agwelek Division and advisor to Maj. Gen. Johnson Olony, heavy fighting continued last night, the 7th Sept, in Wajwok and Lelo.

“wajwok village attacked yesterday around 9:30am by kiir regime forces supported by two helicopters gunships and agwelek forces returned fire in self defense.” Brig. Gen. Nyagwal said.

Nyagwal believes that the Agwelek forces did tactical withdrawal from Wajwok to avoid intensive helicopters gunships bombardments on their positions during the day, however, the rebels returned at 8pm and continued the battles until 3Am, after which the government forces were reportedly defeated.

“Last night at around 8:00pm, agwelek forces returned to their position attacking huge spla forces upto 3:00am where fighting stopped and agwelek forces managed to chased out spla forces beyond lelo village with heavy causalities.” Nyagwal said.

The rebels alleged that at least 300 dead bodies of government soldiers are littering Wajwok village.

Latest reports from Lelo confirmed that SPLA-Agwelek forces have withdrawn from Lelo village but government troops have proceeded to Malakal, leaving the area vacant.

“Agwelek forces did tactical withdrawal from lelo to their wajwok base to avoid unnecessary shelling from malakal just opposite to lelo east bank of the nile.” Brigadier Nyagwal said.

Nyagwal further confirms that other than the last night battles, the West Bank is relatively calm this morning as the government troops fear losing Malakal to rebels forces emerging from Dolep-hill, Canal and Khorfulus.

The recent escalations of fighting along the River Nile are believed to have been triggered by a government marine convoy which was dispatched from Juba to Malakal before the signing of peace agreement on 26th August.

Whether the dispatch was coincidental or intended to violate the peace Agreement, the two sides have been involved in intense fighting with either side claiming “self-defense” from the other.

The government has lost some of the barges, gunships, military equipment and troops captured by the rebels from a convoy that is now recalled to Juba.

14 comments

  • Riek Machar and Johnson Olony doesn’t want peace because it is not good for them.

  • Agumut,
    Yesterday you claim that, it is a right for goverment to push Rebel far from Airport but today you cry. Don’t you know that SPLA io is more braved soldier then hungry sell out Dinka? look how they surrendered themselves in Wathkech.

    • To cry about what,while rebels are the one playing you. Propaganda.

    • GatNor

      I seen pictures of the captured soldiers of Juba faction. They are ignorant loss souls sent to their death to defend tyranny. Tyranny constitutes access of evil in a modern democratic society. I guarantee most of those combatants are not in any official military records. Their sacrifices will not make historic public recognition. Juba is in hot water with temperature near boiling point.

  • Call it propaganda, why Kiir admit it when making meeting with JCE? Where are 3 Barges that were dispatched by Kuol Manyang?

  • Karab

    What a useless government. Salva kirr started the war unnecssarily. He is prolonging the peace agreement unnecessarily.

  • GatNor

    Juba faction of SPLM/A will have early X-Mas gifts wrapped in suspiciously looking sanction boxes. Currently it matters less which warring faction started this civil war. The concerns are implementation of bringing the war to complete end. Those who hinders the road to peace on both sides are asking for it. SPLA/M – Pagaak is in the defensive since the signed agreement came in effect and that is a position not to wedged away from at this of looming sanctions. Let freedom reign while Jaang waste scrambling for unnecessary tribal hegemony of South Sudan.

  • I don’t need peace, let rebels capture malakal when they captured it and then we kill them all, and recaptured again.

  • Tolio

    There is no way government forces supported with helicopter gunships could have had 3 hundred of its soldiers killed by rebels.

    If the rebels have this overwhelming fighting power, they would not be talking about battles of capturing Malakal from government Soldiers. They would have been ruling the whole South Sudan by now.

    Rebels who prove too brave to defeat government troops in the battle fields,would have been defiant to any regional and international calls urging them to stop fighting weak government forces and give peace a chance.

    As for the government barges alleged to have been destroyed by rebels, there were not helicopters on board. None has been shot down or captured fully operational.

    There is no photographic or video evidence from the fighters who claimed to have done the destruction.

    What is known always to be usually the case is that rebels ‘ spokespersons deliberately tell lies as part of propaganda to keep up the morale of their ethnic supporters. SPLA used to tell those lies about having defeated or destroyed convoys of advancing government troops to people of South Sudan during the past civil war between South and the former whole Sudan while at the same time asking for international help. This is the same strategy that the rebels are using here.

    To stop such bare faced lies from going on and on, it is time journalists with daring guts bring to their audiences, live pictures and video clips showing the most seemingly to be enjoyed conflict over the need for peace -the civil war as clashes happen on the grounds between the government and rebels in South Sudan.

    A history to be written and taught to future generations after the civil war would need some pictures and video reference to back up scripted words and illustrations for better understanding.

    World War I and World War II, Iraq War and Afghanistan War, just to write a few all got that photographic and video evidences that the war of South sudanese lack.

    Pursuing such significant evidence is what a journalist should be praised and proud, not siding with any of the conflicting parties while failing to present the truth.

    It is a risky job to conduct and so do soldiers think the wars they fight are worth dying for. The journalists should have the same mindsets of soldiers.

  • Gatluak Tuach

    Dr fool Riek will never Never Never Rule south sudan as a president.