Machar’s group release prisoners of war in Sobat state

Well dressed prisoners of war being handed over in Phou State to ICRC to return them to Juba(Photo: file)

Well dressed prisoners of war being handed over in Phou State to ICRC to return them to Juba(File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

October 17th 2018 (Nyamilepedia) – The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) led by former First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon have released prisoners of war under its custody in Sobat state, sources have told the Nyamilepedia on Wednesday.

The prisoners of war (POW), one source said, were handed over to the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) on Tuesday in Mandeng near Nasir town in Upper Nile State by the opposition governor of Sobat state Gen. Banak Riang.

“James Banak Riang, governor of Sobat state is in Mandeng now. Yesterday, Red Cross took them from Mandeng air strip,” the source told the Nyamilepedia on the condition of anonymity.

The source told the Nyamilepedia that the prisoners, three in number – two privates and one sergeant, were captured three months ago after trying to reach Malakal from Wechnyar military barrack falling into SPLA-IO who later detained them.

“Those prisoners were captured last three months when they wanted to sneak away from Wechnyar military barrack to Malakal and they lost their way and captured. They are three in number, two privates and one sergeant,” the source told the Nyamilepedia.

South Sudan President, Salva Kiir Mayardiit and opposition leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon in June signed a permanent ceasefire agreement in the Sudanese capital Khartoum to end the ongoing fighting.

The pact also provided for the release of prisoners of war and political detainees.

The two rivals also signed the long-awaited revitalized agreement which is a part of the IGAD effort to end the five-year old brutal South Sudan conflict which has killed thousands and displaced millions putting other millions to the risk of starving.

President Salva Kiir in September issued a presidential order for the release of prisoners of war and the release of political detainees but no action has been taken by security sectors to comply with the order. It is not clear whether it is the President or the security sector delaying the release of the detainees.

The SPLM-IO governor of Sobat state was not available for comment.