JUBA, 8 January 2021 – A notorious South Sudanese militia commander, General Ochan Puot, has been appointed commander of special forces in Maiwut County in the Upper Nile State.

Maiwut is a stronghold of the armed opposition to President Salva Kiir Mayardit who appointed Gen. Ocha Puot on Wednesday.

Major General Ochan Puot

Maj. Gen. Ochan Puot Photo Juba Monitor

An attack commanded by Gen. Ochan Puot against the SPLA-IO in Maiwut killed dozens of civilians and came very close to replunging the country back into the long, deadly, seven-year civil war South Sudan is yet to recover from.

There was international outrage against Gen. Ochan Puot, forcing President Salva Kiir to call him back to the capital, Juba.

Some of the soldiers under his command were so horrified by the slaughter of civilians that they accused Gen. Ochan Puot of misleading them and working to destabilize Maiwut and other parts of Upper Nile State.

Pro-government forces near Maiwut, Upper Nile State, South Sudan

Build-up of government forces near Maiwut preceded mass slaughter – Photo Sudah’s Post

Gen. Ochan Puot defected from the country’s main armed opposition group (SPLM-IO) to join forces of the SSPDF, loyal to President Salva Kiir.

Since 2019, Gen. Ochan Puot has not let off on his efforts to prevent or sabotage efforts aimed at implementing the revitalized peace agreement.

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