Ilemi Triangle belongs to South Sudan, not to Kenya

BY: Molana Deng, USA, Human rights/Criminal Law, MAR/22/2015, SSN;

Named after an Anyuak-chief, Ilemi (Elemi), the Triangle piece of land which now is being claimed by Kenya, belongs to South Sudan because of its people, geographically, economically and socially. The imaginary line which are red, blue and yellow lines are all in South Sudan.

The ownership of the land has been for South Sudanese since 1902, 1907, and 1972 treaties.

Though Kenyan authorities claiming it theirs, this claim has no any legal ground whether red and blue, the validity of the unilaterally-imposed blue-line, which would seem to imply their clear and enduring breach of South Sudanese territorial integrity.

As history is concerned, ownership of the Ilemi triangle has been for Sudan since creation, when Mr. Archibald Butter and Captain Philip Maud (Royal Engineers) surveyed Ethiopia’s border with British East Africa in 1902-3 and marked the “Maud line” which was recognized in 1907 as the de facto Kenya-Ethiopian border.

Addis Ababa renounced Britain’s attempt to rectify this border through a survey by Major Charles Gwynn (Royal Engineers) in August 1908 for excluding Ethiopian surveyors. Make no mistake to know those Surveyors where not Africans to know the border of Sudan.

In 1907, the Ethiopian emperor Menelik laid claim to Lake Turkana and proposed a boundary with the British to run from the southern end of the lake eastward to the Indian Ocean, which was shifted northward when the British and Ethiopian governments signed a treaty.

In December 1907, Anglo-Ethiopian agreement treaty was signed between Ethiopia and British East Africa. Though vague on the precise details of where the border was located, it clearly placed the entire Ilemi on the Sudan side of the Ethiopia-Sudan line, which still gives the ownership of Elemi triangle to Sudan.

In 1914, Uganda-Sudan Boundary Commission that did the survey agreement to allow Turkana nomads access to Sudan land with plenty grass via the now-dry Sanderson Gulf at the southeast corner of the Elemi triangle.

In 1918, the Ethiopians armed the Nyangatom and Dassanech peoples, who are Sudanese to protect themselves from their neighbor in the event of cattle raiding.

In 1928, the Sudan government who were against the South Sudanese agreed to allow Kenyan military units across the 1914 line to protect the Turkana against the Dassanech and Nyangatom.

Make no doubt that South Sudanese didn’t have power to protect themselves and Khartoum was controlling their land without knowing who are the inhabitants to the land and was supporting anything that will kill South Sudanese.

In 1929 Kenya began subsidising Sudan to occupy the territory, which it did not wish to continue because of the perceived uselessness and not their land. By 1931 Sudan agreed to subsidise Kenya to occupy the territory.

The Red Line was drawn by then to represent the limit of boundary where Turkana people can graze their cattle. This was in series of agreements from 1929 to 1934, by the Governor-General of the Sudan and the Governor of Kenya.

They agreed that this Red Line should be accepted as the boundary on the grazing limits of the Turkana peoples as required in the 1914 agreement. This was also done to replace the provisional straight line of 1936 when Italy invaded Ethiopia and briefly claimed the area of the Elemi triangle which still can be questioned.

Kenyan-Sudan agreement, in 1938, there was a joint Kenya-Sudan survey team, that demarcated the “Red Line which is very close to the delimitation a few years earlier of this Red Line, marking the northern limit of grazing of Turkana.

This line, to replace the provisional straight line of 1914 as required by that treaty was carefully mapped and demarked with stone monuments. While Egypt and Britain agreed on this, Italy did not, which still gives South Sudanese de-facto rights because Egyptian, British and Italian aren’t the inhabitants of Elemi triangle.

Although the Dassanetch and Nyangatom had suffered because of the Italian occupation, and wished to recoup their losses by making a raid against the Turkana. Several hundreds Turkana people were killed in the raid.

Following this incident, Italy gave up the claim of Elemi subsequently, which allowed the British to respond with a raid on the Nyangatom and Dassanech.

By 1941 British troops of the King’s African Rifles (KAR) occupied Elemi during World War II. The KAR passed through Elemi on their way to southwestern Ethiopia. Again in 1944 the Britain’s Foreign Office surveyed a “blue line” which was further northwest than the “red line.”

But it didn’t last long because in 1950 Sudan established their own patrol line even further northwest into Sudan where they prohibited Kenyan and Ethiopian pastoralists from moving west of it, giving up policing and development to the area east of it.

However, that Kenya-Sudan agreement specified that this patrol line in no way affected sovereignty; that it was not an international boundary, and money continued to be paid to Kenya to patrol this Sudanese territory. This also gave South Sudanese the ownership of the Elemi triangle.

There was also a little fight between 1949 and 1953 as Sudan attempted to keep the Nyangatom behind this line but it didn’t last long due to the fact that the land was far away from Khartoum and Khartoum were interested in Nyangatom people.

By 1967 President Kenyatta’s administration had made an attempt to seek an opportunity from to the British to secure support for the occupation of the Triangle by Kenya. However, the British were unresponsive and the results amounted to little.

The matter was sidelined and successive Kenyan administrations have been seemingly willing to accept the territorial status quo and their de facto territorial control, even if the Kenyan influence did diminish after the relocation of the Sudanese People Liberation Movement- SPLM to Sudan in the 1980s-90s.

In 1964 Kenya and Ethiopia reaffirmed their boundary, confirming Kenyan sovereignty to Namuruputh, which is just south of the southeastern point of the triangle.

The 1972 Addis Ababa peace accord and Sudan-Ethiopia boundary alteration did not solve the Elemi issue because it did not involve Kenya, but they confirmed that Ethiopia had no claim to the Elemi Triangle.

However; in 1990 Ethiopia armed the Dassanech with Kalashnikov automatic rifles, perhaps in response to Kenyan government action in 1978 in arming the Turkana.

Without any legitimate evidence, many Kenyans marked the Red Line as the official boundary of Kenya since 1960’s, without a proper claim and more recently, most Kenyan maps depict the 1950 patrol line, the furthest northwest, as the boundary.

Following the 2011 South Sudan independence, not only should we have claimed the ownership of Elemi Triangle but the national government in Juba by de-facto, should have revisited the treaty that allowed Turkana’s grazing land rights in South Sudan land.

Although, in 2012, Salva Kiir administration opened a case against Kenya over the popularly known Elemi triangle Land of South Sudan, this case should not only claim the right of Elemi triangle but also addressed the grazing land rights of Turkana people.

It will be so shameful for Kenyan to claim the ownership of the land since Turkana are not South Sudanese but they do travel to South Sudan for pasture only.

It will also be so shameful for Kenyans to invade Elemi triangle because there is oil in that area knowing that Turkana were only given the right to bring their cattle to that area but not to take oil.

This right can also be denied if the regulations are not met. Where would Kenyans get their legitimacy of invading Elemi Triangle stand since they can’t claim in de facto this land?

There might be something behind this action and South Sudanese should ask their leadership why are Kenyan Defense Force in Elemi triangle… what are they doing?

(EDITOR’S COMMENT: It should be poignantly recalled that on South Sudan Independence in 2011 when Kiir’s government re-drew the new map of South Sudan to include the Elemi Triangle, Kenyan foreign ministry immediately protested.
What happened next surprised every South Sudanese. Cowardly and slavishly, the Kiir’s foreign affairs ministry in Juba and his ambassador in Nairobi, all quickly made apologies to Kenya.
The map was redrawn with ‘Elemi triangle’ once more ceded back to Kenya.
As a reminder to all, it’s speculatively presumed that Dr. John Garang, besides offering the Kenyan’s several ‘tin-containers’ filled with gold captured from Kapoeta Arab traders, secretly ‘sold’ off the Elemi Triangle to then Kenya’s president Daniel Arap Moi, allegedly in exchange or as a reward for Kenya’s open diplomatic and military support to the SPLM/A that included free access to importation of arms.
Kenya also built Lokichokio airport in the north near the Sudan-Kenya border for the unfettered and enhanced transport of SPLA soldiers, arms and food to rebel-controlled areas that included the Nuba Mountains, Darfur, Kordufan and Blue Nile rebel-controlled zones.
Regarding the oil and minerals availability, it was long known that that area of what was then known as Kapoeta district was potentially rich in gold since colonial times, hence the Kenyans had always coveted ownership of this area.
The irony now is that despite the more plentiful availability of oil we physically have in Upper Nile, Jonglei, Unity and Northern Bahr el Ghazal states, the Kiir junta has terribly misused the money and now destroyed or severely hampered the exploitation of these areas, only reinforcing the truth that now independent South Sudan nation henceforth is a typical ‘resource cursed’ nation.
After the current civil war in the country, will Kiir, assuming he survives the fight, embark on another war with Kenya…. your guess?)

Molana Deng
Country: USA: International Human rights Criminal Law Student


  1. johnjerry says:

    Elemi Triangle is rightfully South Sudanese and Kenya should have no claim over it. The British Used Elemi Triangle to keep Prisoners as both the Sudan and Kenya were British Colony. What Molana Deng has written is absolutely correct. If the SPLM/A sold it to Kenya without the knowledge of the people of the land they the SPLM should let South Sudanese know. We have tons of issues with all our neighbors pertaining to international borderlines. We should not be sold while we are watching. Uganda too is now right inside South Sudan from all corners.Our Lands should not be grabbed internationally if the practice of land grabs is allowed internally.

    • Lavina Lual says:

      Thank You Molana Deng-
      You are a really South Sudanese with Nation hood in heart.
      All you wrote here is true and I almost shade tears. I was verbally told what you have written here but not in details as you penned.
      The issues of the Ilemi triangle were complicated during the time of Anyanya one movement. There were a lot of cattle wrestling activities between the Ateker cluster surrounding the triangle, especially between the Toposa and the Turkana. I understand the Toposa could run the triangle to Lodwar in many occasions.
      With this understanding, both the Kenya Government led by Kenyatta and Sudan Govt under Gaffar Nimeri regime agreed to have a temporary shared administrative unit of Police between Lodwar and Nadapal …i.e in Loki that should be managed by the Kenya Movement but the cost be shared by both Sudan and Kenya Govt because Sudan Govt had no access to the triangle during the Anyanya 1 movement as it was controlled by the Anyanya 1.
      The Kenya Govt started running the triangle and instituted a police unit in Lokichoggio (Our people called it Nakichokkio sometimes) since then when the Sudan Govt on the other hand was not meeting its obligatory costs until when the Adis Ababa peace deal was signed.
      Another meeting was held 2 years after the Anyanya peace, in 1976 in Lake Turkana of which my uncle attended. The Kenya Govt claimed Sudan Govt to pay them (Kenya) their money they used for running Loki and the surrounding areas for keeping security between the Ateker Cattle wrestlers.
      There was no much follow up made in regards to issue of paying off the Kenya Govt the money because the idea was sent to Khartoum for approval but Nimeri Kept quiet. The Kenya Govt wants the money they used all this time for paying their police and civil servants to run part of the triangle belonging to Sudan.
      Our brothers the NgiTurukana knows this very much, they should not be deceived because up to now if a Turkana person in Loki is traveling outside Loki (to Nairobi or Kitale), he/she will say I am traveling to Kenya because all they have in mind is that being in Loki is in Sudan …so what is new?….the oil….a curse to Africans…?

  2. Eli says:

    Molana Deng;
    At the first glance I read your article’s heading I just burst into laughter, it’s very amusing, first I thought maybe this guy is a comedian or something but then further down I noticed the Editor also bought into it then I realized that I should say something too. I did read some nonsensical articles on this site before but this? Ehm, although I rarely argue with our intellectuals but rather disagree with some of their ideologies. Here is once again another arrogant article, well not really supported but Mr. Editor commented by blaming it on Garang and CPA. I have never been font of SPLA/M regime and their nonexistent policies except of tribalism right from its inception.
    Fellows; (when you are in a ferry crossing a lake and you get to the middle of lake or the deepest waters; it is very unwise to jump off the board and try to finish the journey by swimming while the ferry is going the same destination anyways). This is exactly the typical attitude of our people and that’s why it took us overly so long to gain independence from Britain in 1956 and Sudan in 2011.
    This is like the Israelites story in Exodus of going around Mt. Sinai for forty years in circles because of their stubbornness and slavery mentality that haunted them even after leaving Egypt. Hence there is a saying that goes; “You can take a man out of Egypt but you can’t take Egypt out of him until he learns obedience”.
    Fellows; I know sometimes we like to practice our journalism writing skills and express our freedom of speech and opinions, (something that got Isaiah Abraham murdered cold blooded in Juba, and we do know we will never some if you are in Juba), but this is just a very wrong timing to try and shift the focus away. No doubt; this is exactly what Molana Deng is trying to do here. This is not only an insult to the suffering South Sudanese people in general but to the Opposition groups as well. Mr. Deng my question to you is: Are you meaning that Salva Kirr has already won the pre and post (15 months old) rebellion wars? That he should now ignore every peace process and start a new front line between Juba and Nairobi? Now I do understand just recently Kirr make some bogus “state of the union” address in which he sounded overly above his black cowboy hat. “Kirr could try and wear the tallest and biggest cowboy hats but we all know how small the brain inside that hat is”. No offense but you fellows are stepping way over your limits. “Every frog leaps according to its strength” I still remember my father quoting this statement when he disciplines us those days.
    Ok, yes I agree that we are stubborn and stiff necked people, no doubt about that. Well then; how comes we gave up Khartoum to Northerners which I learnt from history was ancestral Dinka land? Does the word “kor-tum” mean anything in dinka dialect to you? I don’t speak dinka but I was told by friends that it means two rivers meeting (white and blue nile merging)? Please correct me if I am wrong. How about Abiye and Mile 14 which in his presidential campaign speeches Pre. Omar Beshir vowed not to give them to South Sudan?
    Well, now since we start claiming lost lands; let’s also claim Gambella in Ethiopia with lots of gold and mineral deposits there, Soroti in Uganda with cement deposits there; (I’m still waiting for that day when Kirr will ask Museveni that Soroti belinogs to S. Sudan, lol). We lost some lands to DRC Congo and C.A.R. let’s go after them then.
    I hate to disagree with you fellows but you are inching closure to the demise of our nationhood and soon South Sudan will be battlefields in which all neighboring countries will strip us of everything with the help of UN Trusteeship committee.
    And just to remind and warn you; Kenya still have British Forces in its defense force, part of the TROIKA entity. Even Egypt one of our arch rival in Nile Waters is watching every moves to start constructions of Fula Falls in Nimule as they are pushing harder for Jongle Canal project to ensue had it not being the current rebellions, you can read more about Egypto-Ethio GRD standoff. Anyhow, good luck with Ilemi (Elemi), the disputed Triangle.

    • John Samuel Wani says:

      I do not know whether you are a patriot or a sell out. You seem to support the occupation of our land by Kenya. Know that if we allow this wanton occupation and annexation of our territory by even weak states like Kenya, then we are done.
      Your fear that Kenya has British troops that are protecting its territorial integrity is just a fallacy. The contract between the UK and Kenya for the British troops to train and have ,military exercise in Kenya has not been renewed and so there are not British troops in Kenya. Even if there are British troops in Kenya, that can not give Kenya the arrogance to annex other people’s land. We will demand Ilemi and other territories being occupied illegally by Kenya using all available means – diplomatic, legal and force if need be. Kenya can NOT scare us. The Madi of Uganda provoked the KUKU of Kajokei and know what ……. in a matter of hours the Kuku youth are deep inside Uganda. After a week, Uganda Interior minister was in Madi land and he told then nothing but the truth about the border. Similarly, if the Government is still sleeping, we can organize the youth of South Sudan to claim that land by crook of by cook.


      • Eli says:

        John Samuel Wani,
        Nothing wrong with claiming Ilemi back, I hope you didn’t misunderstand me. I am for getting back all lost South Sudanease territories, in fact if you pay close attention I listed everyone of those lost lands including Khartoum, Abye, Soroti, Gambella etc…., and many other areas like border points that were annexed by our neighboring nations, like DRC Congo, and CAR etc….. All that I am alluding to is the timing, for a nation to start stepping out of its boundries first we need to stabilize ourselves, bring peace and unity back, improve the economy and then have a strong armed forces to back any national crisis. The point you might miss here is, when this article was written and by who? I am not sure if you follow the writtings of this fellow Molana Deng who resides in the United States, just in case you didn’t, this fellow always writes in supports of Salva Kirr and his Dinka supremacy.
        You and I could be arguing here about Ilemi and yes perhaps mobilize few youth to go and attack Kenya and Uganda and lose our lives for some lands, but do you really understand the policy of these jenges? FYI, All these Equatorian lands have already being planned to be taken over by the dinkas, whether we Equatorians like it or not our first enemy and biggest problems are the invading dinkas. Moalana Deng is trying to shift the topic and we should not fall for that cheap propagaga. Let’s just for the sake of arguments, say that we are in control of Ilemi due to the oil reserves there which all of us know that is the only reason for this contention. The question is; throuhg which port are we going to ship that oil into the global market? Do we have Sea Port? Off course not, even Ethiopia and Uganda don’t. So, the right approach is to negatiate and make rooms for mutual benefits before starting to use rhetorics of war here. How could we affort another war while Khartoum is still boasting of control of South’s lands? For me there are no logical narratives to support a war with Kenya.
        Finanally, since you brought up the issue of Madi and Kuku, my friend, you need to be very careful. These neighborly friendly tribes had existed in harmony since before the British or Arabs came to our lands and even then they could not break our ties. But now for whatever reasons we are allowing the dinkas who ran from their swampy regions with the intentions to parmenently settle in our lands to succeed in dividing us. These so-called Kuku-Madi and Acholi- Madi or those with half identities including those bastarts born to dinka crooks through forced marriages and rapes of our sisters and daughters are now becoming the real problem. My friend just rest assured that the true sons and daughters of these tribes are watching and there shall be consequences.
        For example what happened in Moya area just recently shouldn’t have happen had the Kukus not listen to divisive policies of the dinkas in the first place.
        Please brother, let us not change the topic, everyone knows the real threats to existence in our ancestreal lands are the dinkas. We must reject in the stronest terms possible of dinkas’ policies of divide and conquer and get them moving back to where they came from, the mosquito infested swamps. We did offered them shelters just like every sane human would have done to people escaping dangers in their times of needs, but now time is up, they need to pack and leave. And any Equatorian who is or are assisting these intruders are considered as part and percel of the obstacle hence deemed as enemy.
        Eli Wani

        • John Samuel Wani says:

          Hi Eli,
          Let deal first with the external land grabber before we settle our internal issues which are mainly driven by politics and mentality of cattle. Cattle politics are easy to deal with.
          I see no reason why to lambast Deng here, though you associate him with Kiir. Deng has written a brilliant topic on national issue. The fact that he might be a Dinka does not warrant such ranting.
          If you read my posting, I gave war as the last resort after exhausting all ways ( diplomatic and legal ), therefore, I did not beat the drum of war as a means of reclaiming back our lost land to the Kenyan grabbers. obviously, you can not rule out war if they do not adhere to any legal and diplomatic means of resolving this issue. In any case, we can not allow our selves to be a punching bag of the region even by militarily crippled states like Kenya.
          As you are still weighing the war option, you never know what the Tobosa are thinking. They are equally up to the task and the Kenyan army know this very well having tested the wrath of the Toposa some few years ago. \
          Land is rare commodity this days and it is very painful to loose it just like that and we keep quite. The fact that we have land issues with Khartoum does not mean that we also have to allow some of our territories to be annexed and we keep quite.
          When it comes to issue of Khartoum and Nairobi and Kampala, we have to forget about our internal issues of Equatoria, Bahr el Ghazal or Upper Nile. This issues can be sorted out if we get a good leader. However, we lost our land to other countries, reclaiming back is not an easy task. Therefore we discussing international issues, let try out best to avoid internal politics.

          • Eli says:

            I respectfully disagree with you. If Ilemi belongs to South Sudan then why do you only mention Toposa to fight for it? You are inciting one ethnic group against another sovereign nation. I still don’t understand where you are coming from, but you are wrong to think Kenya is a weak nation. We have bigger problems and need to deal with. No to war with Kenya but yes to war with Museveni.

  3. False Millionaire says:

    Mr Deng & Editor,
    This article n the editorial comments constitute a fantastic change to the usual articles so confined to dealing with the most messed up circumstances of the war,tribalism,corruption n the general bad conditions of the misrule in the country.We have been so preoccupied by bitter feeling of hostilities towards each other.But all to the sacrifice of our ideal national interests like the questions of this piece of land,the status of the places along our northern boarder with sudan including Abeyi.

    I am affected by the article n the editorial comments in a very special way.In September 2012,I was in Mombasa for a lengthy month stay.My professional activities turned sore with undue delays n I was compelled to wait.There was nothing better for a pass time but reading kenyan newspapers every morning.I was so amused n most excited by behaviour of our great uncle hon. professor Taban Lo louyuong,the founder of the faculty of english literature in the most prestigious east african university that is known today as university of nairobi.The great subject of the debate was the nobel price for literature award.The Kenyans n their media were banking on their countrymen Wa sé’nko(please check the spelling) for the price.But uncle Taban contradicted them by arguing that Wa séanko’s work were indeed copy of Chinua Achebe’s work n that if there was justice in attributing the nobel price to an african as a reward to an authentically original african literature work,it was only due to Chinua Achebe.The kenyans got too outraged n sought to find an angle of attack to hurle insults upon us becouse of our lack of development due to the civil war.Uncle Taban retorted back by saying that east Africa was an english literature desert,hiding the unsaid words that kenyans were too lucky to have a south sudanese founding for them an english faculty of literature but too stupid to have not made use of it to be able to produce authentically original african writers like Achebe.

    But there were other high topics of great interest.They were the discovery of huge reserves of oil n the underground lake of fresh water in turkana land.The kenyans were upbeat n over excited becouse the media had made it so clear that it was God’s blessing from heaven upon Kenya n the kenyans.The two resources once exploited,the media predicted,the kenyan most urgent problems that are lack of fresh water,energy n the cash from oil sales would be resolved so quickly giving the great prospects of Kenya becoming a wealthy country in an immediate future.It’s just now I am understanding that the place where these resources were discovered was indeed the triangle of the land named Elemi that is in reality a south sudanese territory.

  4. Duop Nyidar says:

    it is a pity that we are being led by an idiot called Salva Kiir. These are the kinds of nationals that we resolve with our neighbours but look the fool is giving away all our oil money to murderer Museveni, bastard Uhura and shenkala Dassale of Ethiopia as bribes to keep him in power. All our land has been grabbed by our neighbours and surely we have to fight to retrieve it when Kiir is sent away. It is shameful for Kiir to grab Equatoria land while our national land is being grabbed at his own eyes what a coward!

    Duop Nyidar

  5. james says:

    Mr editor I have been a long time reader of your website, and I must say keep up the good work. Consider me one of the silent majority, but one who knows very well our national interests. I want to say that I feel strongly about this issue of the border area which Kenya is claiming at the moment, I may just ask this question. which country got independence first Kenya or Sudan, the first country to get independence must have got its map drawn first. In short its a long story and lets handle them one at a time.

    But with regards to your website please begin by putting up the right map of South Sudan. I had wanted to point out a long time ago but I did not know the real position of the website with regards to this issue that is why I could not point out. But now since you have made clear your view on this issue, please allow me to request you to put the right map of South Sudan up including Abyei until it is determine internationally or you can put it as disputed with dotted lines. But for Ilemi please put a map that indicates it clearly South Sudanese.

    This might seem a small matter for some but let us not forget that these maps that are shown in various places such as the website serves as an informing tool for those who might not know the map of their country. Another thing I would like to mention is that Kenya is at the moment on a propaganda that the area belongs to them, and one way of how they do that is by printing their version of their map of Kenya which includes that triangle. For example check the bags of cement imported from Kenya to South Sudan, and also most of the bill board for public commercial adverts which are printed in Kenya and has the map of South Sudan, the printing companies in Kenya, usually print those South Sudan maps without the triangle.

    So I stop here for the moment, and the decision is yours.
    Thanks though.

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Dear James,
      Indeed your point about altering the map on the logo of the website has been demanded several times before by concerned readers and nationalists like you.
      I will now contact my web designer to insert on the logo a newer map that includes those so-called contested areas.
      But most importantly, let’s keep campaigning against our own leaders…be it the self-serving Kiir and SPLM or Machar and rebel SPLM-IO, as both leaders and sides incidentally have high personal and political stakes on these issues.
      Thus, with most of Kiir’s stolen billions of dollars hidden by and in Kenyan banks or Machar’s current co-habitation with Sudan’s Omar Bashir, our demands for these contested areas will always be kept suppressed by the two protagonists and this paralysis neatly serves or satisfies the interests of those countries currently occupying the lost lands of South Sudan.
      Anyway, thanks, and let’s just keep the flames burning on this issue.

  6. Lotim Koroma says:

    Dear Editor,
    Your article sounds interesting and it arouse alot of nationalistic feelings in me.I failed to understand why Juba government did not follow up the issues of boaders immediately after independent? This mentally our leaders concentrating only on Sudan and putting aside other outstanding issues with othere neighbouring countries should stop,and they keep on saying ‘we do not want to fight two wars’.How will our government ask Uganda to stay away from its territory when Ugandan troops are inside South Sudan?
    Our land has been annexed from all corners,Hot spring( Moyo suhun) in Budi County is being occupied by Ugandan troops and this is where Dr.Garang used to held meetings with international dignitaries.
    We must stand up as youth of South Sudan and condemn this illegal/forcefull occupation of our territories by foreigners.
    Thanks guys!

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Lotim Koroma,
      It was almost a predictable situation that the SPLM/A leaders or rather call them ‘crooks’ would fall under the spell of Kenya after the CPA. The Kenyans, being naturally corrupted people, had plenty of time to observe how corruption slowing infected the SPLM/A comrades during the long struggle time, even they (Kenyans) abetted these SPLM/A people commit murders among themselves in Kenya.
      As such, it was very easy for the wicked Kenyan leadership to pressurize the already deformed SPLM/A gangsters to cede the Ilemi triangle as payment for the open support they gave the SPLM/A.

  7. Lotim Koroma says:

    You are very right here and I think we shall one engage ourselves in a war we are not suppose to editor,from the look of things where do you think prominent politicians got money for renting lofty buildings in East Africa? They might have exchanged parts of our land with other prominent politicians in East Africa or any other country in the region especially this one is affecting Equatoria so much since most our politicians are domant and people of yes in the parliament and they can never raise any motion partening rampant occupation of Equatoria land by foreigners. I am not a tribalist but I just to drive point home to politicians who are money minded and cling themselves to personal interests only.

  8. Salva Kiir, gives South Sudan territories to foreign nations to eliminate Nuer, so in return those countries which got free land in South Sudan would help Kiir kill Nuer of South Sudan. Now the blood of innocent Nuer murdered indiscriminately in Juba and else where in South Sudan is circulating both inside and outside of South Sudan.

  9. Losike says:

    Does kenya have evidence to support their claims over Elemi triangle?

    • Boniface says:

      Losike (Ekamoit, locien ka ayapaakeju emekui. ..) we don’t claim our ancestral land from anyone. Whatever name you call it, the land under reference is Turkana land, just see it even from the names our ancestors gave to it, (Lokwanya, Karach, Soya, Naita and Ng’igole). So just know that whatever you call Elemi is not in Turkana land, neither is it in Kenya. If anyone wants to annex it, I assure you it will not be easy, you will get us on the ground.

  10. Nuer-Another Israel in East Africa says:

    Molana Deng,

    This is a no-brainer matter. Elemi triangle isn’t the reason why Kenya Defence Force is in that area. Politic is so dirty; it isn’t black and white. The civil war taking place in South Sudan is the reason why Kenya invaded Elemi triangle in disguise. The real moto is to assist Kiir on this side of state since rebels are allegedly rumored to have a base in Eastern Equatoria state. Yes, the land is sold to them by Kiir in exchange for their military involvement in defeating Nuer. So KDF is there to fight rebel in Eastern Equatoria State.

  11. False Millionaire says:

    Dear Mr John Samuel Wani,
    How so much you sound like a God’s envoy from heaven!!!
    Questions of our national interests like ilemi triangle n Abeyi among many others have been long sacrificed to the debates on our internal problems caused by bad leadership.It’s a certain blogger named Nikalongo who tries to reason like you time n time again but he is always too lonely.I don’t believe that God turns blind eyes against the wishes of a suffering society like ours.So you inspire high hopes in asserting that our internal issues,”can be sorted out if we get a good leader”.

    Wishing you a very best day,thank you.

  12. Palamot says:

    Dear deng,
    it is very interesting article (history) which we have been looking for. Pls keep on citting on web all time. To come on my point of view, to u all my commentors remember ethiopia before the current gov’t it was known for tribalism but now is peaceful country with good Gdp. We must dream that to happen one day. Leave talking about dinkas, shulluks, great Equatorians and Naath(nuers) we are one the only problem is power loving leaders such as macher he have not even fought for s sudanese struggle. I knew him very well he come only to get power. Let him go back to khartum. Iam advicing everyone not to hate Naath people b/c of macher he will be back. I remembered when we were fighting in bush he was studying his doctarist and now he is studying his PhD. Concerning s sudanese borders the only problem is now macher self rule war. Remember that no single s sudan land will be lost to foreighners sucg as sudan and kenya. We have great mighty fearful people who never surrender to sudan for 20 yrs. Some commentors mentionf Gambela belong to s sudan, we have no problem with ethiopia. Gambela is anyuak and nuer state these peoples are both on s sudan and ethiopia they live in hormony. Ilemi triangle problem is not kenyan (kikuyu) it is normadic turkana who want to escalet a problem b/n kenya and s sudan. Mighty Toposa-nyangatom are teaching the turkana a lesson. Ethiopian nyangatom and Murile resisted kenya expansion. Kenya s sudan border is 1902 mark. On sudanese side starting from mighty abiye (Ngok) through panthok heglig to miles we are going to teach sudanese 20 yrs war and they it very well. Our realy problem is self rule alike macher.

  13. Brian says:

    South Sudan has no argument to support their claim. Uti Possidetis states clearly that colonised states inherit the boundaries set by their colonialists. SS gained its independence in 2011, many years after the greater Sudan inherited the boundaries set by the British. the Ilemi lies squarely under the Kenyan territory.

  14. koko says:

    Brian has a point. All countries kept the colonial boundaries they inherited on independence. I think there is such resolution made by O.A.U[now A.U] to that effect .I think the wisdom was that conflicts would never end because our borders as we know them are colonial creations, simply put every country could make a territorial claim on another based on precolonial times. Uganda did claim a third of Kenya’s western territory during Amin’s time while Somali claimed north eastern. luckily sense prevailed on the western side while military action followed on n eastern. Kenya will never rush into war with any country. It amuses me to note that some of you believe Kenya is weak militarily, that Kenya would need BATUK[

  15. Kenya has no argument or even apillae to claim Elemi triangle ,socially ,geographically even by its trees belongs to the peoples of South Sudan,Kenya has taken an opportunity been made by civil war to claim even Nadapal,but for your knowledge ,Kenya Government was paying fee to khartoum in 1994 and since because of LOKICHIOGGIO,though this war ,we are a ware what is going on at border side,Kenya safari can be read now adays in Narus county in eastern equatoria,and yet Kenyan Tans making noise every morning,that means what? you wait where you are ,we are ready to face you by IGAD first ,then the rest will follow,KENYAN LET US REMAINS BROTHERS AND SISTERS PLEASE U ARE FAR FROM ELEMI.

  16. annoyed kenyan guy says:

    I have no idea on validity of your claims. What is dismaying is the tone and wariness of your article. South Sudanese are generally a hostile lot. Kenya practically put south Sudan on the African map.
    What the hell would a small piece of land, most likely with disputed colonial legacy, be in in the bigger scheme of things?
    We are still hosting your people after an internal tribal war after your said independence.

    Some times I think your people are an ungrateful lot and should be shipped back to your undeveloped land that lacks bare necessities… and even worse … lacks manners and courtesy.
    Like I said I have no idea what the hell Ilemi is but as sure as hell i do know what a hostile ungrateful tone is when i read it on some article.

    I don’t feel any more sympathy for your warring tribes. Not yet developed to full civilized people as yet.

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Annoyed Kenyan,
      South Sudan would now have developed may be better than your country if South Sudan was not so rapaciously raped and underdeveloped by none other than you Kenyans.
      Tell me, how much has our oil money, our natural resources and our cash gone to Kenya????
      Just remember this fact: President Arap Moi blackmailed Dr. John Garang into giving up this Ilemi Triangle in return for the access to port of Mombasa.
      Kenya is a land of blood sucking leeches, not brothers.

  17. lokichokio boy says:

    Elemi is turkana ancesntrial land since creation which is Kenyan by all standard of measurements. If i may ask; what is the motivating factor for this debate on Elemi? I can see references being made about the colonial territorial records on the issue but for your information, the turkana people have been battling both the Ethiopian and the British imperialists from occupying Turkana Land (Elemi) and succeeded in protecting it to date. So when we see some people making some reckless comments over an already protected land because of resources that have been found there , we just laugh it off !

  18. Ben Musa says:

    I am a Kenyan man whose first encounter with a Sudanese man was in a prestigious university in New England, USA, where we were both taking our graduate school studies. It was in the same school where I encountered the first Sudanese lady; a beautiful woman in body and mind.
    Growing up in Kenya as a child in the 1970s and 80s, the pictures of the South Sudanese I saw and info I read saw in books were caricatures of primitive sub-humans; a step up from monkeys. I learned of the Zande people in my Std 5 Geography class. I heard of the Dinka and Nuer too as I did the Nyang’wara – that being my father’s name!
    Mark you, this was in 1980. I was just ten years old in a village up in the Kenyan mountains overlooking Lake Victoria. We grew coffee, bananas and the best Tea outside of Asia.I consider myself a village boy; born in a mud house with a grass thatched roof but reading and studying about the proud pple of South Sudan in a land so different from mine. The primary school that I attended though had electricity, piped water, flushing toilets, departmental libraries, etc and my local town had a public library that dedicated half of it’s resources to Children’s material which I devoured with wanton abandon.
    I went to college in Kenya and Graduate School in America where I met my aforementioned Sudanese classmates. This was 21 yrs ago. The thing that surprised me most was that the Sudenese guy who must have been in his mid 30s took offense when I told him I thought he was South Sudanese. He promptly told me he wasn’t African but Arab from the North. I, the African Kenyan, was three to four shades of skin lighter than him. As for the lady, Rana Badry, she told me her father had started the first university in Sudan for women. They were progressives but added that if I ever asked her hand in marriage, her family would denounce her.
    As a student of internal development, I was intrigued by the Sudanese qstn and have paid more attention to the developments in larger Sudan than most pple ever do. I have learned the internal politics of the two Sudans in order to better understand them and have friends from both sides of the border btwn your two countries.
    However, I have just happened upon this website and read what all you guys have expressed with a sense of profound disappointment. The vitriol, ignorance, chest-thumping I have read here makes me believe that in deed, you guys have a long way to go before you know who you really are, your neighborhood, and place in the world.
    For starters, you talk of Kenyans in conspitorial tones. I wonder how many of you here, even with your foreign exposure, can name five Kenyans who aren’t Kenyatta, Moi, Kibaki and Uhuru..being the only four presidents we have had since indepence in 19?? any of you know when Kenya got independence from the Brits?
    Kenya has about sixty tribes…can any of you name two out of the Kikuyu , Kalenjin and Luo that dominate Kenyan politics and from where our presidents hail? Remember how much I knew about your pple as a ten year old in 1980? It was more than you know now as Western world educated intellectuals in your 20s, 30s and 40s in the Google world of 2016. That’s pathetic!
    You talk about pple and places you have never been to and are woefully informed about. Let me give you this newsflash: over 95% percent of Kenyans have never heard of the Ilemi Triangle. A lot more don’t care a tad about it. Kenya has never earned a single dollar from oil anywhere in its borders including Ilemi (illegally, if it’s in deed in SS)! However, 99% of Kenyans know that we have hosted millions of refugees fleeing South Sudan for decades, invited them into our homes, neighbourhoods, schools, churches, etc before , during, and after your independence. Yet over 90% of Kenyans has never seen SS currency and even I, don’t know what you call it – and don’t care.
    If you think there are mobs of Kenyans out there worried about SS and Ilemi by making maps and out to invade you, sorry, you are mistaken. Most Kenyan men, including me, find most SS women highly undesirable. I wanted to use the word disgusting but I refrain.
    Kwa muhtasari, you guys sort out your internal problems first. Learn primary healthcare provision, build primary and secondary schools, and turn yourselved into a pple worth of self-governance and respect. If you think Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda , DRC, CAR are your existential enemies with whom you wanna show your military machoism, you are morons and will be bought cheaper in today’s international markeplace than your ancestors were in the slave markets of Khartoum, Cairo and all over Arabia!
    You have one enemy you must be very very very wary of: CHINA!
    Brothers, go do your homework before you rush here to blather and spew your ignorance.
    My email is if u wanna be mad at me.
    Kwaheri !

  19. Nasike Anyarangimoe Lomerimanik says:

    The people of .Sudan,do not go so many miles about the elemy triangle,I reside at the elemi and I claim it as akenyan teritory .
    The people caring for the elemi are the Turkanas in kenya ,do not go in to records we do not know how it started because every side has its own history.

  20. Leo says:

    South Sudan is the youngest nation on earth, that is unless Hawaii manages to Break away from the USA. But you are already at loggerheads with all your neighbors, yet you are a land locked country which in modern economics means you are quite at a disadvantaged position . Before Colonial conquest, the turkana grazing lands traversed the areas around Lake turkana, North, East, West and South. Ethiopian conquest secured lands above that Lake in the 20s where as arming of the nyangatom and dassanech saw the turkana pushed below the ilemi triangle. From there is when all the editor said came to play. But you must remember that even before South Sudanese independence, the Sudan government which by de facto controlled the area after armed toposa and nyangatom stormed the region all the way to lodwar and horr still ceded administrative responsibility to Kenya. And you do not administrate land you don’t posses. But my suggestion is not even for Kenya or south Sudan to own that land since conflict is inevitable from such actions, the land could be set as open for nomadic persons to graze, and a joint administration of both countries done to minimize propensity of conflict

  21. Eras says:

    Settle your internal issues first then you come and let us discuss about Elemi. You guys have big issues if you can’t agree on how to manage even what you have.

    • Rose says:

      Thank you so much for your strong advice to them. First solve your civil war which I’m sure it would take a very long time if not centuries!

  22. Ekile Anatuntun Nakoribela says:

    Let the ss young guys go and ask their old men the wisdom because they don’t know that as long as they have a tick on their testicles they will keep scratching their testicles all the time with arrogance and disgusting pride. Turkana people are not cowards and they will never be and the Toposa not know it very well. The Turkana and the Toposa are both from Ateker group and the Dinka or Nuer and whatever only know war because they were fucked by Arabs. The Turkana hosted as refugees for long but they are useless lot who don’t appreciate a good neighbour. SS cannot even fight Kenya because Kenya military is well equipped than you and does not kill each other like you. Don’t think being in war for long time makes you a fighter but a useless bastard who doesn’t understand the word peace. Infact SS people should appreciate Kenyans because Kenya made them what they are proud of today….useless Samwel et al…..remove those ticks from your testicles before you start seducing another war.

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