SSDF Forces Captured Malakal Town From SPLA in South Sudan
Union of Nuer Community in North America (UNCONA)
The Nuer community in North America condemns unprovoked attacks of South Sudan Defense Forces by the SPLA in Malakal town. The attack ordered by Vice-president Riek Machar to assassinate SSDF’s Gen. Tang Ginya on Nov. 28, 2006 has now turned into a civil war between SPLA forces on the one hand and the SSDF forces on the other.
The Nuer community is deeply concerned about the civilian casualties reported from Malakal town. According to eye witnesses, the SSDF forces captured the town including the Airport. Around one hundred and fifty civilians are reported killed in the crossfire of artilleries between the two antagonists. It also reported that the SPLA forces are regrouping with an intention of recapturing the town.
We appeal to international community, particularly the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), to intervene and stop the fighting so that civilians would be safely withdrawn from the town. The UN forces have a duty to protect civilians in the situation of war between two warring parties. As it is stated in their mandate, they must intervene immediately to save lives.
We call upon the SPLA and SSDF to cease all hostilities immediately and find out modalities of resolving the conflict. The death of civilians is unacceptable and the lives of women and children must take precedent over settling political grudges.
The Nuer community, in no uncertain terms, condemns Riek Machar for ordering the attack against the South Sudan Defense Forces. The Ceasefire Protocol of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement clearly states the need for restraint. The CPA demands the SPLA forces to abstain from endangering civilian lives by attacking South Sudan Defense Forces.
We strongly demand President Salva Kiir to suspend Riek Machar from his position for instigating conflict among South Sudan armed groups for political reasons. Nuer community learned that Riek Machar ordered the assassination of Gen. Tang Ginya for sectional and clan feuds between SPLM’s appointed Commissioner Maluit Wii and Gen. Tang Ginya. It is very irresponsible for Riek Machar to endanger the lives of civilians in the town by declaring war in order to benefit external enemies of South Sudan. No South Sudanese would benefit from South-South conflict wished by Riek Machar and corrupt officials like Kok Ruei in Juba.
We appeal to President Kiir to suspend his Vice-president and launch an investigation into the incident. Those like Riek Machar and Kok Ruei who would be found liable by the investigation for causing South-South war shall be brought before a competent court and sentence to imprisonment.
Capt. John Gatluak Kam
President of Union of Nuer Community in North America (UNCONA)
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