SEPTEMBER 18, 2009: LRA Moving North Says SPLA

LRA Moving North - S. Sudan Army Official

SOURCE: IKV Pax Christi Horn of Africa Programme

By Manyang Mayom

September 17, 2009 (JUBA) – Southern Sudan Military Intelligence have determined that the Lord’s Resistance Army leader is moving toward Chad, according to the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) Spokesperson Major General Kuol Diem Kuol. He further affirmed that the LRA has now become powerless.

Maj. Gen. Kuol announced this on Wednesday night, claiming that Joseph Kony and his deputy are moving toward Darfur and that an attack is expected in Western Bahr El Ghazal.

Over 80,000 people have fled from their homes in Western Equatoria and Central Equatoria this year, according to a report released this month by the World Health Organization. The LRA guerrillas are implicated in a recent wave of massacres and killings in DRC, Sudan and CAR, with upwards of 1,000 killed since December 2008.

Ugandan army forces are pursuing LRA in the Central African Republic, according to recent media reports.

Kuol noted that particularly in Tumburia County of Western Equatoria on September 11, 2009, SPLA military intelligence found fresh footprints of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) from Central African Republic heading toward Raja County of Western Bahr-El-Ghazal state. "According to the intelligence we have, LRA leader Joseph Kony and his deputy Okot Ozimo, they are heading toward Darfur; some of his forces will remain in DRC and some of the troops’ lives have become difficult for Kony to operate in Southern Sudan."

He went on to insinuate that paramilitary forces aligned with the Government of Sudan would orchestrate a military action or threat that ould allow Kony to escape: "For Mr. Kony to move away from South Sudan, the National Congress Party (NCP) in Darfur are now threatening our forces in the North of Raja County in such a places like Timza, Karita, and Kitkit … – there is a big threat that Murahileen militias are threatening our forces of SPLA and the objective of NCP behind this threat is to let Joseph Kony with his deputy move freely to reach Darfur and then to Chad without facing a military offensive."

"All our forces in Raja area… are now put on maximum alert," affirmed Kuol. "I want to make use of your Sudan Tribune media to inform our civilians not to be surprised by this notorious LRA attack," he concluded.