September 15, 2018, Press Statement on SPLA Withdrawal from Mbudu as SPLA IO Intensifies Offensive Operations
The Ministry of Defense & Veterans Affairs and SPLA GHQs would like to inform the people of South Sudan, the region, International Community, IGAD and TROIKA that a Platoon Sized Force deployed at Mbudu Forward Observation Post, Kupera County in Yei River State conducted tactical withdrawal after being attacked for two consecutive days by SPLA IO fighters loyal to Dr. Riek Machar.
A second group of rebels attacked own forces deployed at Jamara Military Outpost , Kupera County on 13th and 14th September 2018. A third force attacked Sokare, Kajo-Keji County on 14th and again today 15th September 2018. The unprovoked attacks on our defensive trenches at Mbudu, Jamara and Sokare resulted in two of own soldiers getting martyred while eight others sustained gunshot wounds with varying degree of severity.
The SPLA IO fighters responsible for carrying out such attacks are under overall commander of Maj. Gen. Mabiy Gar. In Southern Liech State, SPLA IO fighters occupied Mirmir Junction which connects Leer with Bentiu town hence effectively denied civilians freedom of movement. Its worth mentioning that SPLA IO intensified attacks on own positions for two reasons:
1. Wanted to recapture more territories which they would used as assembly areas and contonment sites and
2. Finally wanted to attract attention of the American Army & Government upon learning of planed visit to Juba on Tuesday( 17th September 2018) of an American General who is the Commander of Africom Force.
SPLA regrets continuous rebels’ attacks even after the signing of the final Peace Agreement.The National Army calls upon CTSSAM to investigate the latest waves of unwarranted violations. It’s very unfortunate for Dr. Riek Machar to sign an agreement without ordering his forces to observe cessation of hostilities afresh.
SPLA reiterates its commitment to the Final Peace Agreement in general and Permanent Cessafire Agreement in particular but will not hesistate to fight in self defence in the face of continuous unprovoked, unwarranted and counter productive attacks.
Maj. Gen. “psc” (Eth) Lul Ruai Koang,
Director for Media & Press and SPLA Spokesman,
Juba, South Sudan