Over 30,000 South Sudanese arrive in rebel stronghold town: SPLM-IO

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South Sudanese refugees

JUBA – More than 30,000 displaced civilians have arrived in the rebel stronghold of Pagak, near the border town with Ethiopia amid accusation by the rebels that the government forces continue attacks on their position in the Upper Nile region.

“Over 30,000 internally displaced persons ( IDPs ) have arrived in Pagak in the first two days of the offensive and the number increases by hours”, said Tut Rom commissioner of the rebel controlled Jotome area.

He further said 50,000 IDPs from Yom, Mathiang and Malual counties are congregated in Torbar, Panomdejop and Nyalonglong villages as they are in dire need of humanitarian assistance.

“One can only imagine the danger the vulnerable IDPs face, particularly the women, children and the elderly, during this rainy season. Malaria and malnutrition cannot hold far off from invading these displaced persons,” the commissioner told Sudan Tribune.

South Sudan rebel SPLM-in-Opposition Friday has accused the government forces of continuing its attacks on civilians in Eastern Adar State, Greater Upper Nile region, warning such actions are driving the country back into full-scale war.

Lam Kuei, press secretary of the rebel leader Machar Friday said the government army and its allied militia of targeting civilians and forcing them to flee their villages in Eastern Adar.

The accusations come amid regional and international calls for the armed group to commit itself to a cessation of hostilities to enable aid workers to reach civilians in the war affected areas and to eventually lay out the ground for a peaceful settlement.

The armed opposition group has called on the international community, the IGAD, TRIOKA countries and the African Union to condemn the ongoing attacks stressing they are instigated by President Salva Kiir.

“This military offensive and many similar other provocative attacks only proof Kiir,s intention of the declaration of unilateral ceasefires to mean nothing other than a military strategy to confuse and catch others, including the International community, off guard. Some of the weapons used during this offensive carry chemical contents,” Lam said.

(ST)

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