The soldiers had reportedly encroached into Ugandan territory and erected a roadblock one and a half kilometres from Ngomoromo border post in Lokung sub-county.
Two South Sudan People's Defence Force soldiers have been shot dead
while another captured by the Uganda People’s Defence Forces-UPDF soldiers
following clashes along the disputed Uganda-South Sudan boundary in Lamwo District
The soldiers had reportedly encroached into Ugandan territory and erected a
roadblock one and a half kilometres from Ngomoromo border post in Lokung
The SPLA soldiers with a command base in Aparapadwanya, some six kilometres
from Ngomoromo border had shifted their roadblock from Otwilo to Lakolori, all
areas presumed to be on Ugandan territory early this week on unclear reasons.
Lamwo District Police Commander Moses Akena says that the clashes erupted on Tuesday
after UPDF intervened on intelligence reports that some SPLA Soldiers were
harassing locals at a newly erected roadblock on Ugandan territory.
According to Akena, the SPLA soldiers on seeing the UPDF approaching opened
gunfire at them in an attempt to defend their position.
“These men moved to the border part close to Ngomoromo and erected a road
checkpoint and had been harassing the locals. When the UPDF at Ngomoromo got
the information, they tried to intervene thinking it’s a light issue but on
approaching, the SPLA soldiers just opened fire on them,” says Akena.
Akena notes that UPDF soldiers retaliated after being attacked adding that in
the process, they managed to kill two of the intruders and captured one.
He notes that the army is detaining the suspect at an undisclosed location for
interrogation while processes are underway to repatriate bodies of the killed
soldiers to South Sudan.
Joachim Ocan Opoka, Lokung LCIII Chairperson says the clashes have left many
locals residing along with the border point in fear of harvesting their crops
in the contested areas.
He called on the army to heightened Security deployment along the contested
area to ensure locals safely harvest their crops.
The Tuesday clashes come amidst concerted efforts among security personnel
between the two nations to bolster relationships along the contested boundary
in Ngomoromo following series of security dialogues.
In January last year, security personnel in Uganda and South Sudan
formed a Joint Border Technical committee comprised of 13 members from
each side to resolve the Ngomoromo Boundary dispute but their work has failed
to bear fruits.
Efforts to demarcate Uganda-South Sudan 470 kilometers
international borderline in Northern Uganda by the Joint Technical Committee of
the African Union has been hanging in balance since 2016 following civil strife
in Africa's youngest nation.
Bureau Chief, West Acholi