World Africa 11 Jul 2016 South Sudan is ‘ba ...

South Sudan is ‘back to war’

AGENCIES
Published Jul 11, 2016, 12:09 am IST
Updated Jul 11, 2016, 12:09 am IST
The government has not responded to Col Gatjiath’s comments.
First Vice President Riek Machar (L) delivers a speech to journalists next to South Sudan President Salva Kiir (C) and Vice President James Wani Igga (R) prior to the shooting outside the presidential palace in Juba on July 8, 2016. (Photo: AFP)
 First Vice President Riek Machar (L) delivers a speech to journalists next to South Sudan President Salva Kiir (C) and Vice President James Wani Igga (R) prior to the shooting outside the presidential palace in Juba on July 8, 2016. (Photo: AFP)

Juba: South Sudan is “back to war”, a spokesman for the vice-president told the BBC, as rebel factions clashed. Forces loyal to Vice-President Riek Machar say their positions in the capital, Juba, have been attacked by government troops. Col William Gatjiath, Mr Machar’s military spokesman, told the BBC President Salva Kiir “isn’t serious” about a peace agreement. The government has not responded to Col Gatjiath’s comments.

Heavy fighting erupted in South Sudan’s capital on Sunday as former rebels and government soldiers exchanged fire two days after gun battles left at least 150 fighters dead. Fighting was heard in several other parts of the city throughout the day, including the tinderbox Gudele neighbourhood — where Machar is headquartered — and the central Tongping area near the international airport, with gunfire intensifying and subsiding at different times.

 

The US embassy in Juba warned its citizens to stay indoors. South Sudan marked five years of independence on Saturday. The violence has raised fears of renewed instability, with a 2015 peace deal failing to quell unrest.

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