Government troops take over Yuai town from rebels

SPLA troops made significant gains Wednesday into rebel-held territory, capturing Yuai town in Uror County of Bieh, one of South Sudan’s newly created states.

Yuai town, which lies on the Lou Nuer territory, remained under rebel control since fighting broke out between government troops and SPLA-IO fighters in December 2013.

Col. William Gatjiath Deng, Military Spokesman of the SPLA-IO forces, told Radio Tamazuj on Thursday that the government forces entered Yuai town on Wednesday evening for the first time since the outbreak of civil war in 2013.

He claimed that the SPLA forces took over Yuai town without any heavy fighting, saying their forces were deployed in areas far away from Yuai town. “Yes, the government forces have taken over Yuai town, we did not fight with them because our forces were deployed in areas far away from Yuai,” said Gatjiath.

However, the rebel spokesman pointed out that their forces launched an attacked on Yuai town on Thursday morning to retake it from the government forces, saying fighting was continuing.

Meanwhile, Gabriel Gai Riam, a prominent politician from Akobo area, confirmed that the government forces managed to control Yuai town. However, he didn’t give more details about what was going on in the area.

For his part, Lul Ruai Kuong, Military Spokesman of the SPLA army, said he did not receive any report about any clashes in Yuai town.

In January, President Salva Kiir directed the newly appointed governor of Bieh state, Majok Gatluak Thoah, to go to the rebel-held Bieh state.