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KWAJOK - 16 May 2013

Exclusive: Ex-rebels ‘threat’ to Warrap State

The deputy governor of Warrap State, Akec Tong Aleu, said the armed group led by Bapiny Monytuil in Unity State forms a direct threat to security in Warrap. The troops of Bapiny Monytuil, part of the South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA), are awaiting their reintegration into the South Sudanese Army in Mayom County in Unity State.

Aleu spoke at the Freedom Square in Kwajok, capital of Warrap State, where the 30th anniversary of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) was celebrated today. The deputy governor addressed the crowd at the square in place of the governor who was away participating in a conference in Wau.

President Salva Kiir issued an amnesty for six rebel commanders (including Bapiny Monytuil) and their troops earlier this month. Two senior ex-rebel commanders from the SSLA then crossed from South Kordofan into South Sudan in preparation for their reintegration into the South Sudanese Army. The SPLA Division Command has given them a site to settle in Mayom County for the time being.

The deputy governor referred to a violent cattle raid last Sunday in Warrap’s Twic County where three people were killed, according to the commissioner of the county. This incident proves the threat coming from Unity State, he said.

“The type of guns are not like the ones cattle raiders have used all these years… this group has a lot of machine guns and ammunition. Some of those guns and ammunition already have got dangerous to our communities and property at the border of the county,” said the deputy governor.

“People living in the triangle area do not have peace completely,” Aleu said. He pointed out there is a continuous problem of cattle raiding in this area and most incidents occur during the dry season. Aleu called on the national government to “speed up the relocation of the Bapiny armed group to where the government can control and monitor them.”

Photo: SSLA Commander Matthew Puljang addresses a crowd in Mayom, Unity State, early May 2013 (Radio Tamazuj)