The SPLA has capture 3 bases from the SPLA- IO operating in Western Bahr- El- Ghazal. The three rebel bases of Bagari, Bazia and Brinji were captured following a military offensive on Saturday in the outskirts of Wau. In a telephone interview the SPLA spokesperson, Colonel Santo Domic stated that the operation had been hindered for the past 9 months in Wau due to the rebels hiding amongst civilians and laying ambushes.
Confirming the SPLA attack on their position in Wau, the SPLA IO spokesperson in a Facebook post alleged that they had repulsed the initial attack on Saturday morning and had pushed back the SPLA towards Wau town.
When asked whether the offensive was in breach of the unilateral ceasefire announced by the President of South Sudan at the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government’s 30th Extra-Ordinary Summit on 25th March 2017 in Nairobi, he stated that the capture of the 3 bases would help in providing a secure environment for the holding of the National Dialogue. The SPLA spokesperson said that the SPLA-IO was operating as terrorists and not a liberation movement.
A deadly ambush was carried out on Sunday by the SPLA IO on an administrative convoy from Division 5, which was traveling between Busseri and Wau town, killing six soldiers including, Brigadier General Peter Par Jiek and Major Bol Chut Dhuol, the brother of the Governor of Western Lakes Matur Chut Dhuol. The convoy had taken ammunition and other logistics to Bagarri and was attacked on their way back to Wau town.
Wau was rocked with 3 days of fighting following the Saturday SPLA offensive with sporadic gunfire heard early Monday morning. Skirmishes were also reported in the neighborhoods of Hai Nazareth and Hai Costi between the Dinka and Luo communities. UNMISS mounted two patrols on Monday afternoon said 16 civilians had been killed and ten people had been injured. The situation in Wau has since calmed with 84 civilians seeking shelter at UNMISS POC camps and 3000 at the Catholic Church compound.
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