Sudan Vows To Crush LRA

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The snails-pace negotiation to end Uganda’s 20 year bloody civil war now nears collapse following the Southern Sudan government’s threat to attack the Lord’s Resistance Army.

The Southern Sudan city of Juba has been the venue for the peace talks initiated last year between the Uganda government and the LRA with Riek Machar, Vice President of the autonomous South Sudan government acting as mediator. The LRA recently abandoned the talks after questioning Machar’s neutrality.

In a news conference today Salva Kiir, who is President of South Sudan and Vice President in the Central government in Khartoum said the Sudanese army will attack the LRA which it has blamed for a series of fatal attacks attacking civilians in private vehicles.

''We will not tolerate LRA rebels on our territory if they insist on boycotting the Juba peace talks,� Kiir said. “We are also tired of their ambushing vehicles on the roads. They set fire on the ambushed vehicles and kill innocent occupants. Our forces will drive them out of Southern Sudan if they continue abusing our hospitality.''

Kiir said he would even welcome coordinating the assault against the LRA with other 
neighboring countries.

Vincent Otti, the LRA deputy chief, responded in kind: '''They invited us here for peace talks. If we are not satisfied with the mediator and venue, they cannot force us to continue. We are ready to defend our selves. We are not scared by Kiir's threats.''

The LRA has asked that the negotiations be moved to either Kenya or South Africa.
Civilians in both Uganda and Sudan would once again be the biggest losers if full hostilities resumes.

The Black Star News’s East Africa correspondent Maganda is based in Uganda.

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