S. Sudan army says repulsed rebel attack on Nasir town

March 22, 2018 (JUBA) – The South Sudanese army (SPLA) on Thursday claimed the armed opposition fighters under the overall leadership of the exiled former first vice president, Riek Machar attacked Nasir town in violation of the signed ceasefire agreement.

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Lul Ruai Koang speaks to the press in Addis Abab on May 9, 2014 (AFP Photo)

Army spokesman, Brig. Gen. Lul Koang said Nasir town came under on Wednesday afternoon from three separate directions, but the attackers were repulsed after government forces in the areas used heavy artillery to thwart their attempts to gain control.

The military spokesman did not, however, unveil details of the attack, making it difficult to know whether there casualties from the attack.

Latjor state information Minister, Peter Hoth Tuach separately confirmed Thursday’s attack, saying the town came under attack from the direction of Noor Deng, Ketbeek and Dhuoreding, but were all repulsed without casualties on the government side.

“The rebel of Riek Machar attacked us in Nasir this afternoon (yesterday). The fighting happened around 2:30pm. The attack came from three different directions on the town but they were all repelled and the SPLA forces still pursuing them by using heavy Artilleries”, he said in a statement extended to Sudan Tribune.

The state official called on the regional bloc (IGAD) and peace guarantors to restrain armed opposition fighters from repeatedly violating the ceasefire ahead of forthcoming peace negotiations.

Officials from the country’s armed opposition factions were not immediately available to comment, while Sudan Tribune was unable to establish whether the clashes were continuing or had ceased.

On 16 February, the IGAD-led peace revitalization process was suspended after failure by the parties to reach an agreement over security, constitutional and governance matters. The talks aim at ending five years of civil war in South Sudan.