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FOUR SOLDIERS KILLED 20 wounded in Waat fighting

By Morris Dogga
At least four government soldiers were killed and 20 others wounded in Waat the capital of Bieh state when government forces came under attack by rebels allied to former First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar, the army spokesperson confirmed.
Lul Ruai Koang the Army spokesperson yesterday said that “a combined forces comprising of rebel fighters and some elements from Lou-Nuer white army attacked SPLA positions in Waat on Sunday.”
Koang said an active combat attack was first launched from the eastern side at around 5:00 to 6:00am in the morning and stopped at around 8:00am, and a second attack launched by the rebels at around 10:00am and stopped at around 12:00 pm.
He said the SPLA were able to repulse the attackers.
Koang said they are yet to get a complete picture of what happened in Waat but said according to the information they have, 20 bodies believed to be from the rebel fighters and the Lou-Nuer white army were found lying very close to the SPLA defensive positions.
He added that a radio intercepted message indicated that they were reporting to their headquarters and shows that 91 fighters were killed.
“The intercepted radio message indicated that they had lost 91 fighters,” he said. “Another radio intercepted indicated that there were 40 others seriously injured,” Koang added.
Koang also confirmed that another attack on their defensive positions was launched yesterday morning but the SPLA were able to repulse the attackers adding that the details of the attack are yet to be determined.
He said tensions are still high in the area.
He added that the information he has is not conclusive and the figures from the attackers might rise.
Koang said the SPLA was only fighting in self-defense because it is still maintaining the unilateral ceasefire declared by President Salva Kiir.
“We still maintain the previous stand of the government that we must observe the unilateral ceasefire the President declared and we must provide a conducive environment for the National Dialogue, however it does not stop us from defending ourselves,” he said.
He blamed Dr. Riek Machar for the loss of lives of both the soldiers and the civilians that might have been killed during the fighting.
Juba Monitor newspaper could not independently verify the information.

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