IT IS ALL KHARTOUM’S DOING
The present wave of militia incidents in Southern Sudan, combined with aggressive threats by leading operatives of the Khartoum regime in regard of the consultations and elections in South Kordofan – due for the 02nd of May – and issues surrounding the disputed oil state of Abyei have confirmed long harboured suspicions, that Bashir’s goons and henchmen are far from happy with the South Sudan attaining independence on 09th July. Inspite of soothing words uttered during Bashir’s visit to Juba a few days ago, reality on the ground speaks a different language, and a concerted effort is emerging to unsettle the South and create an ‘intervention scenario’ for South Kordofan, the Blue Mountains and Abyei areas, which historically belong to the South and were most hotly fought over during the civil war but still ended up with special status, putting many hurdles in their way to become free too from aggression, quasi slavery by the Khartoum regime and enforced Sharia law over the Christian majority population in those states.
Fighting in recent days intensified but a well prepared SPLA responded quickly and not only quelled a potential hotspot but in the process captured and killed several high ranking officers, including generals, of a breakaway faction sponsored by Khartoum.
Well placed sources in Khartoum also speak of a hidden agenda in regard of the South Kordofan state, which sections of the regime appear set to break up by re-creating a West Kordofan state, which could be the long feared trigger of another round of hostilities, as the Southern population there could not stand by idle in the face of such provocative acts and let go of territory, many hope will one day soon also be part of a free and liberated South, where people can decide on their own destiny without being treated as second and third rate citizens in their own country. Notably, the current Khartoum installed governor is also on the list of indicted persons by the International Criminal Court, alongside regime leader Bashir, wanted for crimes against humanity and war crimes committed against the Southern Sudanese population during the liberation war.
Said a regular source in Juba in this context: ‘we shall become independent on 09th July. Let there be no doubt. We always knew it would be difficult but we are up to the challenge. We are vigilant and prepared but unlike Khartoum we are not warmongers. It is not us provoking, we respond only to provocations launched by regime friendly and sponsors trouble makers. We are now just over two months from independence and we stand firm here, we knew they would try, this maybe the peak now but we shall get this under control before we become Africa’s youngest and newest nation.’
East African governments too are said to be watching the situation with concern and some are said to have sent emissaries to Khartoum warning the regime of any mischief, without at this stage however committing any troops or assistance other than at diplomatic level to the government in Juba. Yet, some leaders in the region are on record that should Khartoum return to the warpath, the South would not stand alone, leaving the possible level of support however still open to speculation.
Watch this space.