SSPDF denies attacks in Yei
By Kitab A Unango
The South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) has refuted reports of attacks on its position by forces loyal to the National Salvation Front (NAS) in Yei River State.
Yesterday, the Ceasefire Monitoring Body said they confirmed four violations by both the pro-government forces including the army, the police and South Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO) in greater Equatoria.
Maj. Gen. Desta Abiche Ageno, Chairman of Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement, Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) reported the recruitment and training by the Police, attacks on SSPDF by NAS and violations against women and civilians in Equatoria region as some of the violations.
“The CTC discussed and endorsed four violation reports concerning recruitment and training by the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) Police, attacks against the SSPDF by NAS in Yei River State,” Maj. Gen. Desta said.
He continued saying: “The abduction of women from an Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) by SPLM/SPLA-IO in Western Equatoria and violence against civilians perpetrated by SSPDF in Yei River State.”
However, Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai, the spokesperson of South Sudan People’s Defense Forces denied the allegations implicating its forces in Yei River State.
Lul demanded details of the reports saying neither the government positions have been attacked nor SSPDF carried out any form of violence against civilians.
“I am not aware, you need to tell me when and the name of the place which has been attacked so that I can check. This information you are giving me is fake. Which area and which type of violation,” Lul said when asked to comment on the accusation.
However, Maj. Gen. Desta reiterated CTSAMVM’s commitment to monitor and report security situation to prevent escalation in the country.
“CTSAMVM continues to monitor the overall security situation and reports of tension in order to encourage early mediation to prevent escalation,” Desta said.
Efforts to reach Police Spokesperson, Maj. Gen. Daniel Justin and Col. Lam Paul Gabriel, SPLA-IO Deputy Military Spokesperson for comments were unsuccessful by press time.