September 27, 2017(JUBA) – A South Sudanese armed opposition (SPLM-IO) official has denied claims that a Uganda rebel group fought alongside its troops during last month’s fighting in Kaya, a town located at South Sudan’s border with neighbouring Uganda.
- South Sudanese rebels pictured in Jonglei state on 31 January 2014 (Photo: Reuters/Goran Tomasevic)
A Ugandan tabloid, the Red Pepper published a story on Wednesday claiming Ugandan rebels took part in the Kaya clashes.
But in an interview with Sudan Tribune, Col. Lam Paul Gabriel, the SPLM-IO deputy spokesperson, described the claims as “unfounded” propaganda.
“The SPLA- IO would like to clarify its position on the misinformation trending some social media outlets in Uganda like the Red pepper and theugandan.com.ug that [Uganda rebels] fought in Kaya-South Sudan. Such an accusation is false and baseless,” said Lam.
He added, “The SPLA-IO has been defending themselves from the aggressions of the rogue Juba regime since 2013 until current without foreign aid or military allies”.
The rebel official said the SPLA-IO, from the beginning of the conflict, never got mercenaries to support it and accused the media of bias.
The rebel group, Lam said, had no knowledge of either the existence or operations of any Ugandan rebel group in war-torn South Sudan.
Lam stressed that the entire SPLM-IO leadership stands with the government of Uganda in its efforts to revitalize what he described as the failed 2015 peace agreement mediated by regional leaders