SUDAN WATCH: Unity State: 13 killed in clashes between south Sudan army, Arab al-Misseriya tribesmen

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Unity State: 13 killed in clashes between south Sudan army, Arab al-Misseriya tribesmen

13 people killed after fresh fighting between SPLA and Misseriya
Source: Sudan Tribune, Saturday 20 March 2010 - "Somebody somewhere is pushing them (the Misseriya). They have been used for many years," Kuol said.
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13 killed in clashes between south Sudan army, Arab tribesmen
Source: Xinhua, Friday, 19 March 2010:
Clashes erupted between south Sudan's army and armed Arab tribesmen on Wednesday in an oil- producing state, leaving at least 13 people dead, an army spokesman said Friday.

"These events took place on March 17 when an armed group of al- Misseriya tribe attacked the barracks of the south Sudan army in Unity state, south Sudan spokesman Kuol Diem told Xinhua.

"We stood up to the armed nomads and forced them to retreat," he said, noting that the confrontation left 11 tribesmen and two south Sudan soldiers killed.

Diem accused unnamed sides of inciting the al-Misseriya tribesmen to target the south Sudan army and create disorder.

"There might be political motives behind these frequent attacks, " he added.

The Arab al-Misseriya tribe, hailing from the western Sudanese region of Kurdufan, leaves their hometowns every summer in pursuit of grass and water for their cattle, taking a traditional route that is stretched to the disputed Abyei area on the borders between north and south Sudan.

After the end of a civil war five years ago, south Sudan authorities launched a campaign to disarm the people, and obligated al-Misseriya tribesmen not to bring in guns while crossing Bahr al-Arab area in the southwest during their annual march.
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Twenty more wounded from clashes in Zalingei
Source: Radio Dabanga, Friday, 19 March 2010:
ZALINGEI (19 Mar.) – Twenty persons were injured and transferred to Zalingei hospital after renewed clashes between the Misseriya and the Nuwayba in southeast Zalingei yesterday. A source told Radio Dabanga that six were seriously injured and were due to be transferred to Nyala for further treatment. The situation remained tense. There were reports of pillage, looting and destruction, the source added.
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Three SPLA Soldiers Killed in Clashes with Messiriya
Source: Sudan Radio Service, 17 March 2010:
Wednesday, 17 March 2010 - (Bentiu) - Three SPLA soldiers were killed and four others were wounded when Messiriya gunmen clashed with the SPLA in Abiemnhom, on the border of Abyei and Unity state on Friday.

The injured soldiers are receiving treatment in Abyei hospital.

SRS correspondent James Mabor Puot describes the incident.

[James Mabor Puot]: “The Messiriya were going towards the SPLA camp when they met SPLA soldiers who were on patrol and then they fought. The Messirya were not even moving with their cattle, they were armed with heavy guns. In the fight yesterday they overwhelmed the SPLA soldiers. When they met, both sides started shooting one another. Abiemnhom is the area where fighting between SPLA and Messiriya took place. Last week, there was a big meeting between the Messiryia leaders and the leaders of Unity state in which the Messiriya were asked to disarm when they travel in Unity state but they refused to be disarmed. They said they don’t even want SPLA soldiers at the border; they only want the police to be deployed there. But the government has yet to react.”

There were no indications of how many Messiriya were killed or injured in the incident.
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Stolen Oil
Source: Strategy Page, Friday, 19 March 2010 - excerpt:
March 12, 2010: The GOSS reported that a south Sudan military base in Unity state was attacked by a group of nomadic raiders. Three people were killed in the attack, two of them identified as Sudan Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA) soldiers. The attackers were from the Misseriya tribe, which is generally regarded as a pro-northern tribe. Unity state has oil fields. The GOSS is trying to limit the number of guns nomads (generally pastoralists herding cattle) can carry as they move their herds. The south's gun control initiative has caused some additional friction.

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