Does State Terrorism exist in South Sudan? 

BY: Dr. Lako Jada Kwajok, South Sudanese, NOV/21/2018, SSN;
On the 4th of November 2018, Vice President Dr James Wani Igga visited Yei in what appeared to be a campaign to garner support for the so-called Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS).
The official statement was that he was there for peace mobilization where he said the opposition groups that are opposed to the agreement would be regarded as terrorists after the pre-transitional period.
In the same vein, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Council of Ministers following their meeting in Addis Ababa on 16/11/2018 issued a communique alluding to what VP Wani Igga said.
It was not a surprise to many as IGAD is a biased organisation for the simple reason that the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation is a member of IGAD’s Council of Ministers.
Therefore, whatever comes out from that Council concerning South Sudan, must have been initiated or influenced by the government.
I am glad that VP Wani Igga brought up the issue of terrorism which appears to be at the center of what is going on in South Sudan.
As VP Wani Igga has pointed the finger at the opposition groups that rejected the so-called R-ARCSS as the ones to bear that demeaning characterisation – it’s essential to examine the facts to see if Igga’s allegation carries any substance.
The opposition group that Igga was referring to is SSOA mainstream chaired by Lt. General Thomas Cirillo Swaka, the Chairman of the National Salvation Front (NAS).
In addition to NAS, it’s comprised of the National Democratic Movement (NDM) led by Ambassador Emmanuel Aban, South Sudan National Movement for Change (SSNMC), chaired by Dr Vakindi Unvu, People’s Democratic Movement (PDM) under Dr Hakim Dario, and the United Democratic Republic Alliance (UDRA), led by Dr Gatwech Thich.
Before examining the activities of the above opposition groups, it’s crucial to know what the word terrorism means.
The definition of terrorism is – the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in pursuit of political aims.
No documented evidence links any of the said opposition groups to attacks against civilians, involvement in the kidnapping of aid workers or the blocking of humanitarian relief to the needy in the remote areas.
They were never blamed for the killing or raping of foreign nationals who were endangering their lives to save the South Sudanese people caught in the fight or those in the famine-stricken areas. Some of these opposition groups don’t possess ground forces.
Those that have troops on the ground were never reported to have brutalized the civil population.
The NAS and the SSNMC were under relentless aggression by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army In Opposition (SPLM IO). Their acts were in self-defence in response to the attacks by the SPLM IO forces.
The recent fight in the Minyori area that saw the defeat of the SPLM IO forces brought tranquility and normalcy to the area.
The locals are happy that the SPLM IO forces have finally been chased away from their territory. They are notorious for committing heinous crimes including shooting, looting, and the raping of victims among the local population.
It’s to be noted that the UN and all the humanitarian relief organisations never accused SSOA mainstream of any atrocities committed against civilians.
Similarly, there are no records from the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangement Monitoring Mechanism (CTSAMM) that implicate the group of violation of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement (CoHA) that was signed by all the parties to the conflict.
It’s unclear whether Igga’s characterization of terrorist organisations encompasses the South Sudan United Front/Army (SSUF/A), led by former Chief of Staff of the SPLA, General Paul Malong.
The SSUF/A was never invited to the peace negotiations in the first place. The government blocked its attempts to join the peace process. It clashed with the government forces at its outset.
Such skirmishes are legitimate as they were in self-defence and did not involve civilians. I am not aware that the SSUF/A did attack or mistreat civilians.
Now, let’s take a closer look at the government records and the party that VP Wani Igga belongs to. There are plenty of data that would show to the reader that the SPLM party and the defunct SPLA, where VP Wani Igga holds the rank of a General, is not foreign to what is regarded as terrorism.
To attest to that here are some views expressed by foreign entities:
1. Early last month, US President Donald J Trump, called the SPLM a terrorist organisation that had terrorized the people of South Sudan.
2. The Western media and some organisations like the European-Sudanese Public Affairs Council have dubbed the SPLM/SPLA as the Khmer Rouge of Africa. They contend that the atrocities committed by the SPLA before and after the independence of South Sudan were comparable to what the terrible regime of Pol Pot did in Cambodia in the 60ties and early 80’s of the past century.
3. Priti Patel, the former UK Secretary for International Development, who visited South Sudan in April 2017, declared that the crimes committed in South Sudan, amount to tribal genocide.
4. The UN Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide, Mr Adama Dieng said the following after visiting the Yei River area in November 2016 – “I am dismayed to report that what I have seen and heard here has confirmed my concerns that there is a strong risk of violence escalating along ethnic lines with the potential for genocide.”
5. It was reported over India Today TV and website in March 2016, that in Unity State and elsewhere, the government of South Sudan had sanctioned its soldiers to rape women and loot the properties of civilians in lieu of their salaries that it failed to pay.
6. The African Union Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan finally released its report in October 2015 about the events of December 2013 and beyond. It concluded that what took place was the result of government policy. It further elaborated that a group including some politicians were involved with the aim of “protecting the government and the presidency.”
7. Some of VP Wani Igga’s colleagues are under sanctions by the United Nations Security Council for committing atrocities or instigating such acts. The list includes the Minister of Information, Michael Makuei Lueth, the Chief of Staff of the South Sudan People’s Defence Force (SSPDF), General Gabriel Jok Riak, the Deputy Defense Minister, General Malek Reuben Riak, the former Commander of the Presidential Guards, General Marial Chanuong Yol, and the Commander of the 3rd Division, General Santino Deng Yol.
The above are some of the views of the foreigners regarding the conflict in South Sudan. Mind you the list is non-exhaustive by far. Those expressed views do not differ much from the South Sudanese perspective.
(a) In December 2012, the SPLA opened fire on a peaceful demonstration in Wau town that led to the death of at least 25 people. The victims were protesting against the relocation of Wau County Headquarters to Baggari. Young lives were lost for exercising their Constitutional rights that allow freedom of speech as stipulated in the Bill of Rights. The killings were unlawful and represented State terrorism at its worst.
(b) The door to door killings of the Nuer civilians in Juba a year later after the above also falls within the confines of State terrorism. Similarly, the SPLM IO under Dr Riek Machar, Kiir’s partner in the so-called R-ARCSS, committed atrocities on ethnic lines in Bor, Pibor, and Akobo around that time.
(c) The carnage in Malakal town in 2014 where the lives of inpatients at Malakal hospital weren’t spared, was inhumane and showed how low in morality some people could descend. Both SPLM factions (SPLM IG and SPLM IO) can’t escape the responsibility for the killings and devastation that occurred in Malakal town.
(d) Wau Shilluk, a village in Upper Nile, came under extensive bombing by an Antonov plane that destroyed homes and led to massive civilian displacements and famine. Amnesty International reported how the government troops killed many civilians throughout the offensive and got engaged in widespread looting.
(f) Perhaps the Yei River area disproportionately suffered the worst heinous crimes in South Sudan in the on-going civil war. It’s where the Matiang Anyoor (President Kiir’s Militia) is most active. Some of the crimes are unheard of in South Sudan like the beheadings that included women. Rape and looting of civilian properties are increasingly reported.
(g) In the capital Juba and elsewhere, we have the familiar phrase, “killed by unknown gunmen;” which is used by the authorities to explain the hundreds or thousands of the fatalities across the country. Speculations were rife regarding the identity of the unknown gunmen. It didn’t take General Paul Malong long to uncover the secret after President Salva Kiir sacked him. Malong stated that the unknown gunmen are indeed members of the National Security Service (NSS) led by General Akol Koor, the Director of Internal Security. Regardless of what Malong had done or didn’t do, many would feel indebted to him for decoding the puzzle surrounding the identity of these criminals. It might even indirectly save lives as the culprits have now been exposed.
(h) Juba is the only capital in the world where some citizens live for years in UN Protection of Civilians (POC) sites. There are numerous such sites across the country accommodating hundreds of thousands of civilians. Now, why would a citizen abandon his/her home and go to live in such sites for years?! And why would someone live like a refugee in his own country?! It baffles anyone apart from those who know the real situation on the ground in South Sudan. If citizens are feeling insecure in the capital city, then what would be the state of affairs in rural areas?!
(i) The regime went as far as engaging in the kidnapping of political dissidents from the neighboring countries apparently in collaboration with those countries. The victims were then deported to Juba, detained, tortured, and in the worst-case scenario, liquidated. Where are Justice Peter Abdul Rahman Sule, Lt. General Elias Lino Jada, Dong Samuel Luak, and Aggrey Iddri?  The regime is yet to answer about the whereabouts of these distinguished citizens.
The list goes on and on and points persistently to one thing which is a policy of terror and intimidation practiced by the State against its citizens. It comes in different forms which include curtailment of the freedom of speech, bugging of telephones of those purported to be working against the regime, detention, torture, and liquidation of members of the opposition.
As mentioned earlier, VP Wani Igga was on a mission for peace mobilization. However, many indicators point to the fact that the government had embarked on what I call as “Cyber mobilization” against those viewed as antagonistic to its policies.
It appears; (whether on its own or in collaboration with other regional powers), to have succeeded in influencing some media outlets not to publish materials or any articles from particular individuals, me inclusive.
These websites claim to be independent and stand for freedom of expression within the acceptable universal regulations.
But the truth is that they do practice censorship against individuals and organisations as a result of third-party influence. Sudan Tribune has long been known to be under such control.
However, it’s incredible that some independent websites seem to have fallen victim to such influence.
As for nyamilepedia@gmail.com, the mouthpiece of the SPLM IO, it would only publish a piece if it’s non-critical of the SPLM IO and Dr Riek Machar. The government wants everyone to sing the monologue of the fake peace and accept the status quo.
History has shown the oppressive regimes time and again that such policies are futile. The Nazis tried it exceedingly, but the result was total defeat.
Similarly, the  Communists in the previous Soviet Union applied the iron curtain policy that didn’t save the evil empire, according to President Ronald Reagan, from collapse.
It’s inconceivable that in the 21st century and with all the technological advances in communication and media capabilities, there are still regimes and people who think such policies could work.
The Juba regime thinks it could pull it off by using the resources at its disposal to silence its critics for good. The said objective is unachievable, and the whole thing would end up as a wasteful use of our resources.
The attempt by the government and the IGAD to label the non-signatories to the so-called R-ARCSS as terrorists would undoubtedly get them to nowhere.
They would soon find out that it’s easy to accuse the opposition groups of terrorism, but it’s much harder to make that characterization stick on them. It requires documented evidence coupled with a pattern of conduct and activities.
At present, there’s nothing that could incriminate the opposition of terrorism unless the government and the IGAD consider the refusal to sign a coerced agreement (which is in itself a sort of terrorism) an act of terrorism.
Rather than threatening the opposition, VP Wani Igga should worry much about the precarious situation of his government regarding terrorism.
President Donald Trump has labelled his party as a terrorist organisation and is one step away from branding his government as such.
As for IGAD, convincing the world would be an uphill battle because one of its member States is struggling to get its name off the list of State sponsors of terrorism.
Dr Lako Jada Kwajok

29 Comments

  1. Beek says:

    Riek Machar is a Terrorist, but South Sudan have to allow him back because innocent people of Nuer are dying without any reason.

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Beek,
      What about the biggest kirller in the nation, your president kiir? He is now the biggest kirller than our past enemies, the jellaba Arabs.
      Don’t just look from a restricted jieng microvision.
      Editor

      • Beek says:

        @ Editor
        I have nothing to lose or again from South Sudan, the so-called jiengs had been victims for years. The Central Government is not jieng.

        • info@southsudannation says:

          Beek,
          In political lexicon and lingua, when a government is predominated by a tribal or a religious/sectarian group, it will inevitably and deservedly called by that dominant group’s name, like a Sunni-government, a Shia-government, a Tigre-dominant government, a Buganda or Kikuyu-government, or a jieng-dominant government in South Sudan. In short, we can call such governments as ‘Shia govt., Sunni govt., Dinka govt, Hausa-govt, etc..>…..
          Those are acceptable and conventional political realities. Accept it or hang.
          Editor

          • Beek says:

            @EDITOR
            Why should I Hang MYSELF while I got a 2nd country, I can’t behave like that even I become a STATELESS .

          • Taban Alimasi says:

            Editor,
            I don’t agreed with you and no one should agreed, national government can’t be called by a tribe or religious group. If it has been called that way, it’s wrong, you can only call government by a party name not by tribe or religious group unless it’s tribal leadership for a particular tribe or when a group named their party after their religion. Let us avoid to promote tribal sentiment, as it doesn’t resolve problem it instead will drive us far apart, if we want to end tribalism in South Sudan, the media need to reframe and set better agenda.

  2. Tyson says:

    Lado,
    These criminals in Juba think that people are fools. The cursed “comedian puppy”- Igga moves around with no shame. Nobody listens to these idiots. He better goes to Lobonk to seek forgiveness for the innocent blood that he and his architect in crime, killer Kiir continue to bleed.
    The word SPLM/A is synonymous to killing, raping, looting, land grabbing, lying, etc, the JIENG trademark of rotten revolution. South Sudan under this kraal led government is a total misery and a reminder that the DEVIL with its tentacles, the JCE MUST be defeated at any cost.

  3. false Millionaire says:

    Dr Kwajok,
    You are a part of the mess.Infact,Yei River and masses have not really seen the hell like Bor and other parts of Upper Nile region have.You are the chairman of a rebel movement which strategy is road blocking,screening out of jieng citizens from traveling cars and murdering them as a political way to overthrow the government in Juba.What worries you so much about Igga toying with words of mouth that you waste a page to float out the rubbish that are already known of your likes here?

  4. Beek says:

    Yei River was very cheap,that is where those of Machar and likes Trained Killers and Terrorists to kill innocent people.

  5. Beek says:

    I never received or gain anything from South Sudan, but it is still my Country. I am from South Sudan, but I have no South Sudan’s Passport and I have no interest either. I can buy Visa at the Airport in any African country including South Sudan and that is all.

  6. Mor-Amook says:

    Dear Dr. Lako, at least your article is criticizing government and the party, which is absolutely your right to express your feeling and thoughts. You are sensible writer not idiot like others. The non-signatories cannot be forced to sign, they are free to sign or not. I wish the – would be formed government in April/May 2019 bring them onboard. However, if they continue to refuse, I hope their refusal should not be a continuation of war. I also agree with you that both SPLM-IG or IO have committed atrocities against civilians. One day one time, those who committed such crimes against innocent will be held to account.

    What I don’t know yet is whether you are supporting or leading arm group as well? For your information, there is no doubt, any armed rebel groups engage in military confrontation with other armed group or government must have committed crimes against innocent civilians. That is for sure a behavior of rebels and government military regardless of which country or continent .

    Please don’t worry, there are no terrorist in South Sudan, your armed group is not yet a terrorist. That was political statement from VP Wani and I don’t agree with it. However, I disagree with you on the definition of terrorism as, the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in pursuit of political aims.” My friend, there is no correct definition of terrorism even in dictionary that reflecting the actions.

    If your definition whether from dictionary is correct, then, Israel use of force on occupied Palestinian territory against an armed civilians would fall under terrorism. But America will never ever condemn Israel actions even if they cleared all Palestinians, America cannot define Israel actions as the act of terrorism. The proxy war in Yemen and Syria where superpower are testing their firepower would fall within your definition. The invasion of Iraq in 2003, thousands of civilians were killed in the pretext of Saddam government in possession of chemical weapons of mass destruction, Bush and Blaire never prove or display to the world those weapons after invasion.

    So, the definition of terrorism in practical sense is use against organization blocking American and European interest simple as that. The most recent is horrific premediated murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Karshoggi in Turkey by Saudi government, Despite undisputed evidence from CIA tape, Trump said “America First” This is because Saudi Arabia is an economic and security closest ally to the USA in the region. So, the issue of human right was abandon over interest.

    Therefore, the right definition of terrorism is who block western world interest is a terrorist. Thus, as long as your armed group will not block western interest you will not be accepted as terrorist organization. But nevertheless, if you continue war that would still cause civilian displacement, you will fall under definition of negation forces. That would likely be an acceptable name or definition of those armed group above including group of Gen. Paul Malong. Please give civilians rest.

    • Taban Alimasi says:

      Mr Mo-Amook,
      You are right it’s difficult to define terrorism, but this is an English word, it must be defined according to English Dictionary. However, the political definition of terrorism may differ, each person defines according to their political interest, which is wrong. Your reference to Israel and Palestinian conflict, which is relevant, yes Israel are committing act of terror by intimidating Palestinian civilian.

      Brother Mo-Amook don’t use American administration as an example, if they did not condemn the action of Israel, it doesn’t mean is not terrorism. American administrations define any situation according to their interest, condemning Israel action against Palestine as terrorism would not serve American interest.

      If you are following world events, the incident in Turkey, killing of Saudi Journalist, the information on media clearly pointing figure to the Saudi government. Some American members of congress propose sanction to be imposed on Saudi government, but the American administration said they wouldn’t risk American relationship with Saudi.

    • Eastern says:

      Mor-Amook,

      You have fallen as a prey to the predator word TERRORISM! The British, especially those from the England, refered to the Irish Republican Army as terrorists; now Taban Alimasi has allowed himself to be hoodwinked by these jenge mongrel!

      The difficulty one has with the definination of the word TERRORISM is entirely atributed to the politcal baggage they carry in respect to one of the protagonists in question! All and soundry know where James Wani, Kiir’s assistant, belongs and every one knows where Eastern belongs! Your definitions shouldn’t even look at the recent histories of Algeria and Somalia.

      Black Africa is being washed out of the continent! Museveni of Uganda, established a quazi military alliance to wipe off the land of Equatoria, Black Africans so that they become Ugandans under his militarised and partonised regime. Anyone dealing with a former Soviet Bloc countries SHOULDN’T BE CONSIDERED AN ALLY…!

      Now the defenition of the word TERRORISM should be clear….! I didn’t play PING PONG during high school days at SALIA MUSALA, neither DR Congo, Uganda nor Sudan (yes, till July 09, 2011!)

  7. Abau lemi says:

    Protecting murderer ?
    Kiir will pay gravely for the death of non dinkas killed by his militias.

  8. Beek says:

    I am not going to discuss about Jellaba Arabs Mixed-Race of North Sudan and deny themselves, denial is a kind of SICKNESS. What about African American? Please Fulani people of West Africa are also Light Skinned like them. My own brother and many others were killed in Cold Blood by the so-called Arab nomads (Misseriya) of Sudan, but South Sudan is now free. Misseriya have no future in South Sudan like Rohingya Of Myanmar. PUPPY government in Juba have to wake up with their Misseriya, John and Justin Yaai Arop did the SAME.

    • Eastern says:

      BEAK or BEEK the Jellaba (your spelling), the Jellab OFFSPRING, forget about what befell your other siblings at Akuem, Warawar, Malual Kon, etc. Those you call NOMADS should now be your NISIBS (nesibs in Equatoria).

      Do you want to continue playing the dead man, when abnoxious fucking did take place?!

      I have always ingonred you as anther mad jenge of the PAKUAI fame…..!

  9. Beek says:

    I might be also a Dark-skinned too.

  10. Mor-Amook says:

    Abau, Yes, Kiir will answer accusation on him. But who will then also pay gravely for the death of innocent Dinka killed along Yei, Nimule and Bor roads? You better say, all innocence citizens killed must be accounted for by the suspects.
    Apparently, you don’t mind about innocent Dinka including 2 months old baby who lost their lives because Kiir is the president. Please noted that innocent Dinka were identified as unwanted goods in South Sudan, MTN….. at illegal checkpoints, picked out of vehicle and killed.

    I know non innocent Dinka and Dinka as well lost their lives. So, all suspects must be brought to book whether a party who killed one person or a party who killed two. Innocent Jieng cannot be punished because of Kiir please.

    • Tyson says:

      Mor-Amook

      Ask your kraal chief with the JCE criminals to account for what they have done before the likes of Riek Machar and Wani Iggas can be dragged to court. I am happy to note that you have baptized your JIENG acolytes as MTN. What a recipe!!!!
      Be honest and ask yourself why the MTNs are not wanted by all non JIENG peace loving people of South Sudan? What are you looking for in Yei and Nimule? This means you are the trouble makers.
      You go to Yei and Nimule to kill, rape and grab land…….. You are the criminals and you deserve to receive the best punishment in competent courts. Since people have no trust in JIENG led courts, the anger is waged on any MTN. I hope you will confess honestly, ask for forgiveness and return back to your kraals.

  11. Micheal West says:

    Dear Tyson,
    If you killed Dinka because they are in Yei and Nimule then Kiir militia have legitimate right to kill non-Dinka and rape them in those respective places.
    for your information there is no forgiveness between Dinka and non-Dinka as we are for tit for tat (ya nyam-nyam).
    addition to that why you need to trust Dinka? for what? since they don’t need your trust?

    • Tyson says:

      Michael West
      Thank you for legitimating the CRIMES you committed as JIENG in Nimule and Yei. The evidence is clear and reinforces the case of accountability in South Sudan.
      No matter how long it takes to smoke you out, our efforts are relentless to make you account for your CRIMES.
      Good Luck and see you in the Hague.

  12. micheal West says:

    Dear Tyson,
    If you have killed Dinka because They are in Yei and Nimule then Kiir militias have legitimate right to killed non-Dinka in those areas.

    there is no forgiveness between Dinka and non-Dinka in this battle of hatred and Dinka don’t need trust to be build on them. what for?

    • Eastern says:

      micheal west,
      Pity! Nobody is asking for or disputing the legitemacy of the killings in Equatoria or Yei for that matter. That’s needless if LEGITEMACY is the underlying issue!

      Hurt Equatorian fellows might have killed a few dinka fellows to settle scores, Kiir’s use of the state-sanctioned MATHIANG ANYORS cannot be justified! The Justification of Kiir’s actions only boils down to the general observations: South Sudan government = jenge regime! Correct me!

  13. Mor-Amook says:

    Dear Editor, you are now avoiding my comments to publish and continue to publish nonsense comments from your Equatorians colleagues such as Tyson. What does that mean? I post my comments 3 -4 four days ago in respond to Tyson but you didn’t

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Mor-Amok,
      Your last comments were inundated with intolerable and unacceptable obscene language and that’s why you don’t see them published.
      Editor

  14. Holo Kor says:

    Dear editor of ( South Sudan Nation- the website) and to the modest South Sudan send people

    I have come to understand what has the editor have gone through, all these years.This, however, commence from 2005-from, South Sudan Comprehensive peace agreement, the (CPA), up to now. And that, the editor and entirely the Website members has endured a lot, everytime, they were really pushed and hard against the wall and are shouted at; shove, elbowed, and were told to report, or favour one sided; which is the SPLM/SPLA; the murderous government of Salva Kiir. More specifically, the government of the Dinkas, just to say the least, and exclusively and, only for the Dinkas-under-the leadership of Dinka. We have been also told that, the scandal over fake news, the political tribes and like minded, like Mor- Amook is that, and however, they’ll never except any truth, that goes about against the rotten and up-to -the core corrupt government of, Salva Kiir, Jieng Council of Elders (JCE) and of course, the entire Jieng rule.

    I registered my pity to the editor, and I’m saying that, never got, or get submissive or cowered by these: selfish and the serious narcissistic, and above everything else, the talking trash types of lots and the people (the Jieng), and many and the good for nothing people.

  15. Holo Kor says:

    Editor, you really deserve a tip of the hat for running this website where every South Sudanese should fell free to write their opinions which affect indirectly or directly. No one should take that way from them.

    Anyway, yesterday, I was commiting some errors: the South Sudan; should sp., South Sudanese-for the people of South Sudan…, the possessive pronouns.

    Have a nice day.

  16. mading says:

    Mor_Amok. This is equatorian and Nuer rebels propaganda web, Editor and his people always posted most unfounded lies against Dinkas and South Sudan government on this web by his people, and If you respond your posts are blocked, I have been complaining to this web managers for a long time.

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