US Embassy in Juba issues security alerts for citizens after Luri fighting

United States and South Sudan flags (Credit: US Embassy Facebook page)
United States and South Sudan flags (Credit: US Embassy Facebook page)

April 20th 2018 (Nyamilepedia) – The Embassy of the United States in Juba has issued security warning to its citizens in Juba one day after armed clashes took place at Luri, West of the South Sudanese capital Juba between government troops and those loyal to the country’s former First Vice President Riek Machar.

In the warning issued and posted on the Embassy’s website, United States citizens have been notified of new security measures carried out by the South Sudan security apparatuses in the capital Juba and areas around.

“Following incidents this week of armed altercations in the Luri district, approximately eight miles west of Juba, there has been heightened screening of vehicles and people at security checkpoints around Juba,” the warning read in part.

The Embassy said it has changed its curfew time temporally from 08:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

“Effective immediately and until 06:30 am Monday April 23, 2019, the Embassy’s curfew has been temporarily changed from 8:30 p.m to 7:00 p.m, the statement said in part.

The embassy urged US citizens to use caution when walking or driving at night as well as carrying proper identification including a US passport with current valid South Sudan visa adding that monitoring local media is recommendable for local news updates.

Government troops clashed with South Sudanese rebel forces on Thursday at Luri area, a village near Juba where the South Sudanese President Salva Kiir Mayardiit keep a farm including his cattle. Mathiang Anyor militias reportedly responsible for killing Nuer civilians in the South Sudanese capital Juba in  December 2013 were reportedly kept there by the President and his then governor of Northern Bahr Al-Ghazal State Paul Malong Awan who later succeeded James Hoth Mai as the SPLA Chief of General Staffs in 2014.

Malong remained as the country’s army chief until May 2017 after president Salva Kiir sacked him reportedly after advise from the country’s security chief Akol Kor who reportedly suspected Malong of planning a coup. Malong left his Juba residence and when to Yirol heading for his home town Aweil in protest of the dismissal but was forcefully returned to Juba after Kiir ordered his forces in Yirol to return him to the capital or fight him if possible. He had then remained since then under house arrest in Juba until Jieng Council of Elders begged president Salva Kiir for his release on health grounds in November 2017.

After his release Malong when to Nairobi where he remained until he formed a movement last week to fight the “Juba regime” which he said had looted the country to “complete bankruptcy.”

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