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South Sudan says troops deployment not linked to calls for protests

JUBA – South Sudan Information Minister Thursday dismissed rumours that recent deployment of troops in the streets of Juba meant to prevent protests in the capital.

Inspired by the Sudanese revolution that toppled the regime of former President Omar al-Bashir, South Sudanese youth, organized in a group called ’Red Card Movement’ launched calls for protests against President Salva Kiir saying they want regime change.

Michael Makuei, several days ago, warned them saying if they take to the street they should be prepared for the consequences of their action.

However, on Thursday, Makuei said the troops’ deployment has no relation with the planned protests but a routine security measure ahead of the army day celebration.

“We always deploy forces ahead of any celebration as precaution measures, so it is not something strange,” said the minister.

The Red Card Movement, which has chosen as a slogan ’Kiir Must Go’, says their protests should be peaceful and non-violent. Also, like the Sudanese protesters, they use social media to mobilize for the protests that should begin on 16 May.

In the same vein, the Movement seeks to mobilize the diasporas outside the country to support the planned protests and to carry out solidarity demonstrations across the world.

South Sudanese officials say the situation in South Sudan is different as the country has just ended a civil war and politicians are working to implement a peace agreement.

Also, counter-protests posts are already posted on the social media accusing foreign hands of being behind the Red Card. Sudan Tribune

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