Khartoum: SPLA officer confessed South Sudan support to the rebels

November 14, 2011 (Sudan Tribune)

A Sudanese official agency published today statements, attributed to an officer allegedly a member of the South Sudan army (SPLA), describing how they transfer ammunition and logistical support to the rebels in South Kordofan.

Khartoum and Juba regularly trade accusations over support to rebel groups in the two countries. However, the growing escalation of tension between the two countries recently pushed the international community to call on the two sides to exert restraint.

SUNA released on Monday the "confessions" of a logistics officer in the South Sudanese army (SPLA), saying they use a location called Serjas in the Unity state as base to supply the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement–North (SPLM-N) which fights against the Sudanese army in South Kordofan.

Captain Hafez Hamza Abkar, who surrendered himself to the 14 Infantry Division in Kadguli, capital of South Kordofan, told SUNA he was part of a team tasked with transferring arms and ammunition into the Nuba Mountains through Jmjam which is adjacent to the White Lake area.

The captain added that once the military support is handed at Serjas, the SPLM-N members carry it on their shoulders due to the fall of rain, which prevents the movement of vehicles.

The Sudanese government considers the SPLM-N fighters in the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile as part of the South Sudan army, despite the independence of the latter since last July. Khartoum says they are still under the direct command of the SPLA and receive their salaries from Juba.

Juba is accused of working to destabilise and to weaken Khartoum in order to prevent any ambition in the South. South Sudan alleged support to the SPLM-N aims, according to Khartoum, to strengthen the position of its allies who fought with them against the north and to establish a security belt between the two countries.

Hafez also accused the UN mission in South Sudan of transporting military equipment and evacuating the wounded SPLM-N soldiers.

However, he said that the UN aircrafts have stopped their flights now, as the Sudanese warplanes stepped up their reconnaissance missions in the region. He further said that a small aircraft (air taxi) belonging to the Kenya Airways is now being used to transfer the rebel commanders including Abdel Aziz al-Hilu SPLM-N deputy chairman.

Sudan Air Force last Friday bombed a refugee camp in Unity state killing 12 people and wounded 20 others. The army spokesperson did not deny the attack but said it occurred inside Sudanese territory. Khartoum also said there were no refugee camps in South Sudan but only a camp for the SPLM-N members.

Some thousands of Sudanese refugees from the Nuba Mountains region where the army is fighting the SPLM-N rebels have crossed since last June to Unity state where they have established a camp in Yida. Some others are in the Upper Nile state.

The British aid group, Oxfam last Sunday has removed its 22 staff from Upper Nile after the eruption of clashes between the South Sudan army and the rebel South Sudan Liberation Army which is accused of being supported by Khartoum.


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