South Sudan’s rival forces clash in Upper Nile State

Pagak/Addis Ababa, December 24, 2015 (SSNA) — South Sudanese government forces have attacked a rebel-held area located north of state capital, Malakal, rebel military command has announced.

The leadership of armed opposition military wing said government troops on Thursday morning crossed the river from Malakal and launched surprise attack on their outpost in an area called Makal Chollo.

Nyagwal Ajak, a rebel Brigadier General based in the area accuses the government, saying Upper Nile State acting Governor, Lt Gen.Chol Thon, is behind the attack. Ajak added that Governor Thon has been recruiting, mobilizing, and financing anti-peace groups to attack forces of the SPLA-IO.

The armed opposition further accuses Salva kiir government of trying to disrupt the implementation of peace deal by launching attacks on rebel locations and calls on Juba to establish a unify military command for its forces; adding that the government is “dragging its feet towards the implementation” of  the peace agreement.

The SPLA-IO says it has withdrawn its forces from the area to avoid military escalation as an advance team of the rebels is in Juba to start the implementation of the IGAD-Plus compromise peace agreement.

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