Over 30 killed in S. Sudan rebel attacks since start of year: army

Source: Xinhua| 2018-01-04 17:53:51|Editor: ZD
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JUBA, Jan. 4 (Xinhua) -- At least 30 people have been killed in rebel attacks on government positions across South Sudan since the beginning of the year amid continued violation of a truce warring parties signed last month, the military said on Thursday.

Lul Ruai Koang, spokesman for the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA), said in a statement that attacks by rebels loyal to former deputy president Riek Machar and those linked to former deputy army chief, Thomas Cirilo, killed at least six people in the southern parts of the country on Wednesday.

Koang said another 24 people were killed in related attacks in northern Liech state since the start of 2018.

"SPLA once again renews call for CTSAMM (Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement Monitoring Mechanism) to investigate the latest repeated violations of the cease-fire agreement by rebels loyal to Riek Machar and Thomas Cirilo. IGAD and TROIKA (United States, Britain and Norway) should hold the rebel leaders and their field commanders accountable," he said.

The SPLA said it recorded eight violations of the cessation of hostilities agreement since it was signed in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, last month.

The warring factions had previously violated several cease-fires since the conflict erupted four years ago.

Koang said the SPLA is committed to the cessation of hostilities agreement and other provisions aimed at restoring of peace and stability in the country, calling peace monitors to investigate the truce violations and hold perpetrations accountable.

On Tuesday, the main rebel group, the Sudan People's Liberation Army-in-Opposition (SPLA-IO) denied that it violated the cease-fire and said it had set up its own team to monitor the fragile truce.

The United States, Britain and Norway on Tuesday condemned the latest truce violation and warned that any violator of the pact will be held accountable.

South Sudan has been embroiled in four years of conflict that has taken a devastating toll on the people, creating one of the fastest growing refugee crisis in the world.

A peace deal signed in August 2015 between the rival leaders under UN pressure led to the establishment of a transitional unity government in April, but was shattered by renewed fighting in July 2016.