Key Event Points
- Rebels continue to wage assault inside Marakal Town that is located in northern part of the country.
- The fierce fighting taking place on the strategic northern oil rich area of the country.
- The war has left thousands of Sudan people killed while others have left the town since the war began.
Rebels in South Sudan have continued with fierce assault strategically on the Marakal Town hurting the economy of an area that has rich oil fields. The attack is seen as counter attack by the rebels group against the government troops that have been on the offensive for a couple of weeks.
The rebels who are associated with Riek Machar faction have assaulted Marakal town from all directions; north, south, east and from west, this is according to Machael Makuei, Information Minister. The government troops have managed to push the rebels and securing the town which is the capital of the Upper Nile state.
Situation Analysis and Assessment
Marakal Town has experienced civil war several times since 2013. War broke when South Sudan President Salva Kiir sacked his Deputy Riek Machar and accused him of attempting to stage a coup. South Sudan is also carved along ethnic lines mainly Dinka tribe loyal to Silva Kiir and Nuer tribe allied to Machar.
The war that has so far seen tens of thousands lose their lives and leaving others displaced began weeks ago when rebels who were crossing river Nile via boats and aided by a militia commander from Shilluk ethnic community. The commander, Johnson Olony is powerful and hails from the oil rich hub state of Upper Nile.
The commander who was pro-government was the one who aided the militias to cross over the river to assault on the Marakal Town and has also largely been accused of abducting children and using them to fight in his army.
The regional IGAD bloc has tried to push for peace initiative in March condemning the attacks on innocent civilians but initiative collapsed. Now beginning April the fierce assault witnessed is the heaviest and the government has responded to the rebels in kind in amid to stop the rebels from torching towns, raping and looting aid supplies. As this fighting continues a lasting solution to feed at least 2.5 million in need of relief aid is needed and to save the country from further getting into ruins.