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MALAKAL - 31 May 2023

Malakal police impose curfew as tension rises

Police in Malakal town of Upper Nile State have imposed a night curfew and increased patrol efforts to maintain law and order following tensions sparked by deadly clashes there on Sunday.

On Sunday, at least one person was killed and several others injured following a violent incident at the Malakal POC site.

Tensions between communities at a water point inside the Malakal Protection of Civilians (POC) site erupted, resulting in the death of a 32-year-old man.

But speaking to Radio Tamazuj on Tuesday, Maj. Gen. Chuol Dak, the acting state police commissioner, said calm has since been restored.

“Life has since returned to normal at the POC. We achieved this because forces have been immediately deployed to quell tensions, night patrols, especially around POC, have been heightened, and a 6 pm to 7 am curfew is now in place,” he said.

The police officer said an investigation is ongoing and that they are partnering with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) so that those involved in the violence are held accountable.  

Meanwhile, Luk Sadhalla Deng, the state information minister, also confirmed that the security situation was under control in and around the Malakal POC and across the town.

“On Sunday, tensions were very high because brawls which started among women at a water point within POC turned deadly. A man was killed and his body burnt to ashes, sparking tensions. But now the situation is calm.”

He also added that night patrols had been heightened across Malakal town, assuring Malakal residents and returnees to remain calm and go about their normal business. 

“Following the incident, we deployed SSPDF soldiers and the police in three pickups to take charge of security at the outskirts of POC so the situation is calm. We also imposed a curfew from 7 pm to 9 am, especially around the POC and roads linking it to the rest of the town.”