Sudan Armed Forces surround SPLA troops in S. Kordofan

7 September 2007 (Sudan Tribune)

Soldiers from the former rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in southern Kordofan were under siege by the Sudan Armed Forces who have encircled them, a SPLA spokesperson said on Friday.

"This is a very serious development," spokesman Kuol Diem Kuol told Reuters "Our forces have been trapped there since yesterday," he added, referring to a stand-off close to the centre of Africa’s largest country.

Reuters reported that SAF surrounds 45 SPLA soldiers while Khartoum based al-Sudani newspaper spoke about 6 SPLA officers and 150 soldiers.

SPLA Gen. Brigadier Hassan Hamed Saleh said SAF have detained chief of SPLA organisation Gen. Ayon ALer, Brigadier Malwal Ajok, Brigadier Hassan Hamed, Brigadier David Majok, Brigadier Abdelrahman Mussa and Brigadier Friwaj Wag, besides the 150 troupes. Hassan added that the SPLA platoon has just finished the organization of militia that joined the SPLA.

Militias who were operating under the support of either side during the conflict have to choose to join either the SPLA or SAF, according to the peace deal.

The SPLA platoon was moving across Southern Kordofan State near the centre of Sudan when it was surrounded in Muglad.

Osman Al-Aghbash, the spokesperson of the Sudanese army, said that the presence of SPLA force with arms is considered as flagrant violation for the military arrangement protocol and the CPA. He further indicated that they are investigating the case.

A north-south peace agreement in 2005 ended more than 20 years of war and allowed for the south to maintain an army - the former rebel Southern People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) - together with the north’s Sudan Armed Forces (SAF).


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