August 18, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — Less than twelves hours after the signing of the Peace Agreement by the stakeholders in the South Sudan conflict, the SPLA warring factions have renewed deadly clashes at Pageri town in Eastern Equatorian State.
According to Maj. Gen. James Koang Chuol Ranley, the new Deputy Chief of General Staff for operation in the rebel movement, the government troops attacked their positions within Magwi county, and around Imatong Federal State, this morning.
Gen. Koang confirmed to Nyamilepedia’s correspondents that his forces, under the overall command of Maj. Gen. Martin Kenyi, the Commander of Eastern Equatoria for the rebels and the Deputy Chief of Staff for Moral Orientation, have repulsed the attacks on their positions in Pageri suburbs.
“Our forces under the overall commander of Eastern Equatoria Maj. Gen. Martin Kenyi and Operational Commander, Marli Max repulsed the GRSS forces and pursued them to Pageri town” Said Maj. Gen. Koang.
The operational commander, who also participates in peace negotiations, believes that the SPLA [IO] forces have taken control of Pageri town at 10:00Am this morning, and further closed down the Nimule-Juba highway, the only tarmac-road that connects South Sudan to East Africa.
“Our forces have successfully dislodged the GRSS forces that have been terrorizing and tormenting the community for the last ten (10) months from Pangeri town. The SPLM/SPLA forces have taken full control of the town since 10:00AM this morning” Gen. Koang continued.
“Juba-Nimule Road is officially shutdown from today. For your safety and others, do not travel on this road” the general warns.
The SPLM/SPLA calls on the citizens in Eastern Equatoria “to remain calm as the patriotic sons and daughters of South Sudan are restoring peace in the country”, according to general Koang Chuol Ranley.
Asked of casualties, the general recalls that his forces have captured many ammunition and weapons. In addition, he believes that at least three soldiers were killed on the government side and several others injured.
South Sudan’s incumbent president, Mr. Salva Kiir refused to sign the Peace Agreement that was signed by Dr. Riek Machar, SG Pagan Amum and other stakeholders to end the nearly two years conflict that has claimed tens of thousands of lives and displaced over 2 millions people.
According to Gen. Koang Chol, the intransigence of Salva Kiir is a declaration of war and thus the region and the international community must pressurize Mr. Kiir to sign the peace agreement.
“The regime in Juba rejected to sign the Peace Agreement because it has chosen war over peace. We call upon the international community to put pressure on Salva Kiir to stop attacking our position and sign the peace agreement immediately” Koang added.
The SPLM/SPLA reminds the people of South Sudan that Salva Kiir regime is not ready for peace and therefore the rebels must defend their position whenever attack.
“Congratulations to Maj. Gen. Martin Kenyi, the Deputy Chief of Staff for Moral Orientation(MO) and the Operations Commander Marli Max, NCO and the men of SPLM/SPLA forces, Eastern Equatoria, for successfully repulsing the GRSS and dislodging the enemy from Pageri and restoring peace and order in the area.” Gen. Koang tells his colleagues at the front line.
Pageri is one of the five towns in Magwi county that are contested by the two factions of South Sudan’s SPLA on one side and Uganda on the other side. Other towns in Magwi County include Magwi town, Palotaka, Pajok and Nimule.
The two forces of SPLA have clashed within Nimule town and Pajok in the past few weeks.
South Sudan government is yet to response to these new clashes.
The capital remained tense as the government house arrests the newly sacked Equatorian governors and continue to monitor the response of the region and the international community to Salva Kiir’s refusal to sign a peace agreement that gives his government a lion share at all levels.