South Sudan rebel forces say are in full control of Morobo town in southern state of Yei River State and Nasir a small town in Latjoor State, in the Greater Upper Nile region of northeastern South Sudan following heavy fire exchange with government forces.
The group in a statement did not detail the number of people killed and the impact of the fighting on civilian lives in the said communities.
SPLA-IO military spokesman in the Equatoria region Wai Godwil Bizi said: “We are still controlling Morobo. We managed to capture it since the last two days, we are now in Morobo, so don’t listen to the government propaganda,” he said.
The group’s faction in the North also issued a statement saying their forces are still controlling up to 90% of Nasir area in Latjor state.
However, authorities in South Sudan have dismissed these claims saying that their forces repulsed attempted attacks on their positions by the armed opposition fighters allied to rebel leader, Riek Machar.
“The allegations that Morobo was captured by Rebels of Riek Machar were mere propaganda in an attempt to comfort rebels’ supporters that they still have something they should continue to support. Never did our gallant forces felt any threat of being overrun by the rebels” South Sudan Presidential spokesperson Ateny Wek Ateny said.
The rebels around Morobo and Yei are only capable of killing civilians either based on ethnicity or indiscriminately. So, please ignore the rebels. Our forces in Morobo are intact and Morobo is under government control” he said.