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February 17 - 23, 2014

Media Monitoring Report for South Sudan
Posted on February 17, 2014

Did Kiir Form a Private Army?
Independent Media

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 17th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article49993

  • Salva Kiir has admitted to forming a private army, which is widely believed to have been playing a key role in the ethnic killings that occurred after December 15th clashes.
  • He tried to justify the formation of an unauthorized army by saying it was intended to be a reserve force should the nation need military action. 
  • “It was on this basis that somebody mobilized and recruited some youth to the national service. Those who thought of mobilization of the youth to be trained did not have bad intention. It was not a bad idea. Any country which does not have [a] reserve [force] always gets into difficulties”

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 18th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/president-kiir-denies-forming-private-army/

  • Kiir denies Machar’s claims that he formed a private army to protect his presidency before the mid-December clashes. He says he only recruited for a reserve in the army, not to form his own private army.
  • He said that the youth he recruited are fighting Machar’s forces in other states of the country. “I did not get a country without reserve soldiers. Without a reserve you cannot encounter any threat, and this is what happened.”
Clashes in Malakal: Significance and Consequences
Independent Media

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 18th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50001

  • The rebels claim to have recaptured much of the strategic oil-rich town, Malakal. They were expecting to have the whole state in their control within hours.
  • These rebel sources also claim that Ugandan warplanes were launching air attacks against them.
  • The SPLA spokesman says that Malakal has since been an area of intense clashes.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 19th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50011

  • The rebels say they are in full control of Malakal, the capital of Upper Nile statr. But the SPLA spokesman denies these claims and says that the fighting in Malakal is still ongoing: “The rebels of Riek Machar have not captured Malakal. It is not under their control, although a few managed to penetrate into the town from the south, north and east,” (…) “Our forces remain in control of strategic areas in the southern parts of Malakal, and it is just a matter of time before our forces declare complete control of the town,”
  • The government spokesman also denied these claims, and accused the rebels of breaking the ceasefire agreement signed in Addis Ababa on January 23rd.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 19th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50016

  • The report says that the rebels were able to take over Malakal with little resistance because Nuer soldiers cut off communication with their commanders and left their posts.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 20th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/army-spokesperson-denies-losing-contact-forces-ground/

  • The army denies reports in the media that they lost contact with their troops during the fighting in Malakal.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 19th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50023

  • The top general of the SPLA was wounded by in the rebel attack on Malakal. Rebel sources report that he was shot in the neck.
  • Oil workers in the fields in Upper Nile have fled after hearing reports that the oilfield will be attacked in the coming days. But it is also reported that government troops are already in the area to prevent attacks.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 21st 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50039

  • The government admitted that the army has lost several top level military officers in the battle over Malakal.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 21st 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50040

  • Oil workers in Upper Nile State have fled to avoid being caught in the crossfire
  • The government received requests from the foreign oil workers to evacuate them. Not all of the workers will be evacuated and priority is given to foreign engineers. Local workers with knowledge of the area are to stay to monitor the oil fields

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora)February 19th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50026

  • The US State department has condemned the fighting that has resumed in Malakal, stating that it is a clear violation of the cessation of hostilities agreement that was signed last month.
  • “We condemn the failure of both parties to abide by the terms of agreement and call on both parties to end any military actions aimed at the other, and to finalize an agreement on the implementation details of the monitoring and verification mission”,

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 22nd 2014
http://eyeradio.org/govt-admits-losing-upper-nile-machar-side/

  • The office of the president has admitted that the governmental forces have lost control of Malakal. They labeled this a “tactical withdrawal”

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 21st 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50044

  • The rebels have dismissed the accusations that they have committed atrocities during their recapture of Malakal. The government had accused the rebels of violating the cessation of hostilities agreement by committing atrocities to retake the area. They also dismiss any government threats to retake the areas.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 23rd 2014
http://eyeradio.org/govt-accuses-opposition-forces-attacking-position/

  • The SPLA spokesman says that the SPLA position near Bor’s market has been attacked three times by the rebels in one morning. They said that they were able to drive back the attackers
  • An official of the Upper Nile State also confirmed that there is still fighting going on between government and opposition in Malakal.
  • The situation in Malakal town is still worrying with fighting is still going on in the center of the town. Most of their forces are in the Southern part of the city.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 23rd 2014
http://eyeradio.org/oxfam-temporarily-pulls-malakal/

  • Oxfam has had to withdraw some of its aid workers in Malakal.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 21st 2014
http://eyeradio.org/south-sudan-endangering-lives-civilians-aid-workers-malakal-world-vision/

  • World Vision says that the fighting in Malakal has left civilians and aid workers endangered. They stress that there needs to be a secure environment for World Vision to be able to properly carry out their operations
International Media

World Bulletin, February 21st
http://www.worldbulletin.net/world/129315/150-drown-in-s-sudan-while-fleeingmalakal-fighting

  • Around 150 civilians drowned in the Nile River when they were trying to flee Malakal during the fighting
  • The information minister of the Upper Nile State said that the rebels fired at boats people were using to flee, forcing them to jump into the water. He estimates the death toll to be around 150.

UN (Online), February 18th 2014
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=47167&Cr=south+sudan&Cr1#.Uw40 w_RdUZc

  • Inter-communal clashes also flaring up in the compound that houses 21,568 IDPS
Will Uganda Pull Out From the Conflict?
Independent Media

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 21st 2014
http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50038

  • Uganda does not want to keep their troops in South Sudan for longer than necessary, and will gradually withdraw as per the African Union proposal for the deployment of the African Capacity for Immediate Response to crisis (ACIRC)

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 21st 2014
http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50043

  • The Ugandan cabinet approved Shs120 Billion that they needed for the military budget operations in South Sudan. This approval came less than one week after the South Sudan defense minister revealed that the South Sudan government was paying for the UPDF operations in the area.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 19th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/updf-withdraw-au-deploys-alternative-force/

  • Ugandan army says it will only withdraw if the AU deploys an alternative peace and security force in the country.
  • The Ugandan Defense Forces spokesman said that they entered the country upon invitation on December 23rd to restore peace.
  • They say they will gradually pull out of South Sudan once peace and security have been resorted. “But we’ll not simply draw-down and leave a gap, and create more chances for the resurgence of violence.”

Radio Miraya, (Independent Public Service Media) February 20th 2014
http://www.radiomiraya.org/news-202/south-sudan/13005-uganda-foreign-ministrydenies-the-presence-of-ugandan-troops-in-malakal.html#gsc.tab=0

  • The Ugandan Forces Spokesman denies that Ugandan troops were present during the Malakal fighting.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 19th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/updf-withdraw-au-deploys-alternative-force/

  • Ugandan army says it will only withdraw if the AU deploys an alternative peace and security force in the country.
  • The Ugandan Defense Forces spokesman said that they entered the country upon invitation on December 23rd to restore peace.
Peace Talks Suspended
Independent Media

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 18th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50005

  • The second round of peace talks in Ethiopia failed to resume because Kiir failed to meet the rebels’ demands.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 19th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50019

  • The rebels are accusing leaders of South Sudan and Uganda of obstructing the second round of peace talks. The rebels condemned Uganda’s intervention as being a violation of South Sudanese sovereignty, the UN Charter, and international law.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 21st 2014
http://eyeradio.org/govt-negotiation-team-committed-continued-talks-malakal-clashes/

  • The government delegation for the peace talks is committed to continuing negotiations despite the recent Malakal fighting. The government delegation spokesman said: “We will not attack any rebel position but we are only entitled to defend ourselves in case we are attacked,”
UNMISS Report and Concerns
Independent Media

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 19th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/10-die-uns-malakal-compound/

  • The UNMISS reports that 10 died at the Malakal compound following clashes. They also say that IDPS in the camp have been fighting

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 17th 2014
http://eyeradio.org/urges-neighboring-countries-deport-s-sudanese-situation-still-unstable/

  • The UN urged countries hosting refugees to allow them to stay for the time being as the fighting within South Sudan is still bad. About 130,000 South Sudanese fled into neighboring countries during the conflict thus far.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 22nd 2014
http://eyeradio.org/investigate-violations/

  • The US government says it will work with the UNSC to hold those accountable for the attacks to aid workers and UN bases.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 22nd 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50049

  • South Sudan has rejected the UNSC interim report of human rights. The report involved interviews with over 500 victims and witnesses and other sources from the time of the conflict’s outbreak in December, to the end of January. The South Sudanese government say that the whole things was “pure fabrication.”
  • The UN mission in South Sudan said that a public report of the human rights violations throughout the conflict will be released in April.
  • An official closely linked to Kiir says that people see the UN as working against the government rather than with it.

Eye Radio, (Independent News Radio and Website) February 23rd 2014
http://eyeradio.org/unmiss-presents-report-rights-violations-country-unsc/

  • The UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has presented the interim report to the UNSC, stating that South Sudanese civilians are the ones who bore the brunt of the fighting between government forces and rebels, and that there were immense human rights violations.
  • The report states that many civilians were targeted on ethnic lines.
  • UNMISS thinks it is crucial for the success in solving the current crisis to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 17th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50008 

  • Those who survived the clashes in Juba are calling on various communities for reconciliation and justice.
  • Through its investigation, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has documented widespread killings of members of the Nuer ethnic group. In one incident, between 200-300 Nuer men were taken into a government building and shot, in a Juba suburb.

Sudan Tribune, (Online News Site, Based in Paris for Diaspora) February 18th 2014
http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50015

  • Warrap state is now under heavy rebel attack. Between this and the Malakal attacks, the UN is deeply concerned with the continued fighting, in violation of the ceasefire agreement.

*The Government of South Sudan webpage, as of February 26th, was no longer active.

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