Army not aware of any military provocations against IO in Bentiu – spokesman

SSPDF spokesman Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang and his SPLA-IO counterparts Col. Lam Paul Gabriel (File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

March 6th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan army said on Tuesday that it is not aware of any military provocations against opposition troops loyal to the country’s First Vice President designate Dr. Riek Machar near Bentiu.

This came after social media reports alleged that troops loyal to the South Sudan Army rushed to an area called Pakur, three kilometers outside Rubkona town in Bentiu, where SPLA-IO troops assembled and threatened to fight them if they don’t leave the area which is also officially designated for them.

The opposition troops there reportedly had to relocate to an area called Tong also few kilometers outside Bentiu after they were told to do so by the SPLA-IO Deputy Chief of General Staffs for Logistic, Gen. Koang Chuol who is also a part of security arrangement team in Juba and the co-chairman of the Joint Defense Board (JDB).

Based on an agreement by the parties to the Joint Defense Board (JDB) in February, Pakur was designated as of of the assembly or cantonment areas for the SPLA-IO and South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) troops in Unity state.

Speaking to the Nyamilepedia on Tuesday, South Sudan army spokesman, Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang, said he is not aware of any military confrontations by the army against the SPLA-IO or any other opposition troops based there.

“I am not aware of any military confrontations between our forces and the SPLA-IO troops there in Bentiu nor am I aware of any provocations against the IO or other opposition groups in Bentiu,” he said.

“We are not living like enemies, we are peace partners and I do not know if this could happen between us,” he wondered.

Nyamilepedia could not reach the SPLA-IO information officials for comments as many attempts were unsuccessful.

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