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President Kiir, Gen. Malong Not Responsible For July Clashes In Juba - SPLA


By Dach Agoth Mayen


The SPLA has refuted allegations that its Commander-in-Chief, President Salva Kiir Mayardit and Chief of General Staff, Paul Malong Awan, had directed the fighting which dislodged former First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar Teny from Juba in July.

Brigadier General, Lul Ruai Koang called an urgent press conference on Saturday to dismiss the confidential report issued by the United Nations implicating both Kiir and Malong in engineering the scuffle.  The report published on various international agencies has it that the fighting in Juba was engineered by the army chief who acted with orders from the commander in chief. 

The report argued that the use of Gunship helicopters in war can only be ordered by commander chief and the army chief. However, Gen. Ruai explained that president and the army chief did not order forces to take an offensive against the SPLA-IO but rather pinned blame on opposition soldiers for instigating the fighting.   He said the body guards of the former first vice president repeated the same scenario that escalated further violence in the city. He noted that the president immediately on Monday, July declared ceasefire and the army chief ordered all SPLA soldiers to return to their barracks which he said, was respected. Gen. Lul accused the UNMISS of targeting the SPLA forces in the recent fighting in Juba, arguing that army leadership noted deeply with satellite imagery as evidences of the UN peacekeeping forces hostilities against the SPLA.     

The secretive UN document according to reports indicated that government procured arms at the expenses of the dire economic situation in the country and therefore called for imposition of arms embargo.  This is yet the latest and serious accusation following the visit of the United Nations Security Council to Juba in a push for deployment of the regionally backed protection force in the young nation.

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