Government troops launch fresh attacks on rebel positions in Unity State

Juba/Addis Ababa, May 6, 2015 (SSNA) — South Sudanese government forces and their foreign allies attacked rebel held positions in the oil-rich Unity State, military officials of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-In Opposition (SPLA-IO) in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, told the South Sudan News Agency (SSNA).

Rebel forces allied to South Sudan’s Former Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar, said government soldiers have attacked their locations on Tuesday and Wednesday in Guit County of Unity State.
However, the rebels said their forces have defeated the SPLA-Juba faction and that the SPLA-IO is pursuing them toward Bentiu.

Meanwhile, the Spokesman of the SPLA-Juba faction Philip Aguer refused to make any comment.

The allegations come just few days after the SPLA-IO said Juba-SPLA faction and its foreign allies are ready to launch simultaneous assaults on its outposts in Jonglei and Unity States.

The government forces last night [Tuesday] launched an attack on our position in Guit County Southern part of Unity state but were defeated badly in serious battles and retreated back to Capital Bentiu,” the office of rebels’ Spokesperson said in a statement.

“This morning [Wednesday], they were trying to attack our position in Panakuach Northern part of state where our bases for IO forces are being located but failed to regain the position. The fighting is now escalating up to Tom South payam in Pareing County,” the statement further asserted.

The armed opposition also said local authorities in Leer, Mayandiit, and Koch counties have also confirmed the attacks. The SPLA-IO further added that local and international NGOs are abandoning their operation centers, citing impending government full scale assaults on areas under rebels’ control.

In the document, the armed opposition made it clear that its forces have been obeying cessation of hostility agreement signed in January last year and that the rebels will no longer tolerate what they described as “government’s devil behaviors,” warning that the SPLA-IO will retaliate at a time of it’s choosing.

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