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In yet another unwarranted act of aggression, South Sudan and its proxy forces again heinously attacked and occupied Heglig on April 10th, an area that is indisputably a Sudanese territory.
The assault comes in the midst of strenuous peace-building efforts exerted by the African Union High-level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) whose chairman recently visited with both countries to push for dialogue. This attack is in direct contravention of those efforts and therefore clear proof that South Sudan is neither serious nor interested in forging peace with Sudan.
This latest incident also reinforces the ominous culture of impunity, which enables South Sudan and its proxies to launch attacks in Sudan killing scores of innocent civilians and there would be no international reprimand.
There hasn’t been a single statement from those that are fond of wielding cameras to battle fields to capture the images of those massacred; nor was there a word from those with satellite imagery regarding the movement of thousands of SPLA troops invading Sudan with very visible tanks and heavy artillery. It is a glaring double-standard that speaks volumes to the Sudanese who as a result are increasingly growing cynical of all the talk of Humanitarianism.
The Government of Sudan reiterates its commitment to peace and opposition to aggression. However it will defend the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the country when war is imposed on it, as is clearly the case now. In accordance with the United Nations charter and the International Law, Sudan reserves its legitimate right to respond to this and any further aggression as it sees fit.
The international community is also called upon to bear witness to this provocation and forcefully condemn what is an obvious and blatant act of war. In this regard, it must be recalled that Sudan already has a number of complaints that it has previously submitted to the Security Council regarding South Sudan’s aggression and support of rebels, all of which continue to be ignored.
Sudan also urges South Sudan to realize that it isn’t in the interest of its citizens to wage a war that it clearly cannot win. Neither is this ill-conceived strategy of “attack and withdraw” prudent, as irreparable damage is caused to Sudan and its people whose patience is wearing thin. The Government of South Sudan must change course and shun this aggressive posture before it’s too late.
Image Courtesy of babasteve