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Lakes state clashes kill four, wound three

Sudan Tribune
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February 19, 2013 (RUMBEK) - Fresh inter-clan clashes erupted in Rumbek East county of Lakes state on Tuesday, are reported to have killed four people and left three people wounded, according the local sources in the troubled central state.

The local community says that conflict was over the grave of the late Tuba Manyiel, a well-respected of member of the Pamany sub-clan of the Kok section of the Dinka ethnic group, who was buried in Awaclual cattle camp several years ago at the begest of his family.

However, the Pasthoth sub-clan of Dinka-Kok have objected to Manyiel’s burial in Awacklual cattle camp as they claim ownership of the area.

This week the Pasthoth, Palingjier and Pacuor section of the Dinka-Kok asked for Manyiel’s remains to be exhumed and reburied elsewhere, provoking Tuesday’s fighting with pitted the Palingjier against the Pacuor and the Pamany against the Pasthoth.

Eyewitness said that “four people are killed from both sides of conflict and three people are left with serious gunshot wounds.”

Two separate attacks occured in Alel cattle camp located in the southwest of Rumbek East county and counter attacks occur in Pulapat village located in western part of Rumbek East County.

The witness told Sudan Tribune: “It was not easy to know who is fighting who because people have a lot of intermarried relationship. We heard that three people were killed in Alel cattle camp located in southwest of Rumbek East County."

Rumbek East County authorities responded clashes by deploying South Sudan Police Services (SSPS) to try and separate the groups.

David Marial Gumke, the commissioner of Rumbek East County, said authorities "have ordered police to bring the trouble makers to face justice.”

Lakes state’s new military caretaker Governor Maj-Gen Matur Chut Dhuol has been tasked with bringing security to the state after a series of deadly attacks that his predecessor Chol Tong Mayang was unable to prevent.

Governor Dhuol has announced strict measures to prevent further in Lakes state, such as keeping those suspected of involvement in fighting to be held in secret ghost prison without access to human rights officials, their own lawyer or the relatives.

He has also announced a disarmament campaign but later contradicted this saying that those who wanted to keep their weapons must register them and pay a 150 SSP license fee.

As well as internal security the new Governor will also have to deal with the axis of cattle raiding between Warrap, Unity and Lakes state. As in last years disarmament campaign in Jonglei state groups who disarm then complain they are vulnerable to attack from groups who ave deliberately avoided the process.