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Gov’t, SPLA-IO forces agree to cease hostilities around Juba

A group photo of SSPDF and SPLA-IO forces after the meeting in undisclosed location around Juba, posted by deputy spokesperson of SPLA-IO, Lam Paul Gaberiel - Facebook Page/Nov 6, 2018

The government and SPLA-IO forces have agreed to cease hostilities and allow free movement between their forces in areas around Juba.

The spokesperson of the South Sudan Defense Forces- Major General Lul Ruai-told Eye Radio on Wednesday.

He said the deal was reached between the field commanders of the SPLA-IO around Juba area and the SSPDF over the weekend.

“It is the first contact between the two forces for them to meet face-to-face and to reaffirm their commitment to the cession of hostilities agreement as well as the permanent ceasefire.”

The SPLA – IO team was led by Brigadier General, Warngyang Laku Buyu, while Brigadier Gen. Chol Deng led a delegation from SSPDF.

General Lul said that forces from both sides can move freely beyond their control areas with permission from their commands but without firearms.

“Basically they would allow free movement between the two forces provided that they go without carrying firearms.”

“The SPLA-IO commander in the area agreed that they will no longer carry out road ambushes or other forms of hostilities in the area under their control,” he said.

He also said they agreed that all roads from north of Juba to Terekeka, Mundri and Lainya must be opened to everyone, including civilians to access easily.

According to the deal, there will also be free movement of non-military logistics and goods through or to territories of the SPLA in the opposition.

Major General Lul Ruai said the meeting is in the spirit of the implementation of transitional security arrangements.

In a press statement seen by Eye Radio, the deputy military spokesperson of the IO, Lam Paul Gabriel, confirmed the outcome of the meeting.

He said that “both forces agreed to take full responsibility for any criminal activities or attacks in each other’s territory and bring the perpetrators to book.”

Lam said the two forces had a fruitful discussion on November 4, 2018.

“On 04/11/2018 the SPLA IO forces based around Juba had a fruitful meeting with their counterpart from the SSPDF as directed by the two Chiefs of staffs of the SPLA IO and SSPDF respectively.”

The SPLA – IO team was led by Brig. Gen. Warnyang Laku Buyu along with Col. Peter Gatluit Nyuot,  Col. John Wiyual and
Col.Charles Jada Augustino.

On the other hand, the SSPDF delegates were led by Brig. Gen. Chol Deng Chol, Deputy commander of SSPDF Command, and
David Mayen Malual.