- Title: SUDAN: GOVERNMENT TROOPS AND REBELS FIGHT OVER OIL FIELDS.
- Date: 16th February 2000
- Summary: NEAR MAYOM, SUDAN (FEBRUARY 9-12, 2000) 1. GV: REBEL SOLDIERS FIRING ANTI AIRCRAFT GUN INTO THE SKY 0.07 2. MV: HEAVILY ARMED REBEL SOLDIERS UNDER TREE 0.11 3. MV: WIDE OF COMMANDER AND SOLDIERS 0.17 4. CU: (SOUNDBITE)(Nuer) REBEL COMMANDER SAMUEL GAIYIECHAK SAYING: "We are fighting mainly for the oil because we need our own development for the Southern people." 0.31 5. GV: REBEL SOLDIER ON EXERCISE 0.38 6. GV/MV: SOLDIERS WALKING IN COLUMN (2 SHOTS) 0.51 7. CU: BAREFOOT REBEL SOLDIERS 0.55 8. TRACK: CLOSE-UP OF YOUNG REBEL SOLDIER CARRYING AK-47 1.05 9. SV: SOLDIERS IN A LINE AIMING 1.11 MANKIEN, SUDAN (FEBRUARY 9-12, 2000) 10. MV/PAN: PAN OF DISPLACED PEOPLE AT MANKIEN 1.20 11. CU/MV: WOMAN'S FACE/ CHILDREN (2 SHOTS) 1.27 12. GV/CU: WOMEN WITH TRIBAL MARKINGS OF THE NUER TRIBE EATING WILD FOODS AND LEAVES (4 SHOTS) 1.47 13. MCU: ZOOM IN TO CHILD CARRYING SLEEPING BABY 1.55 14. cu: (SOUNDBITE)(Nuer) MARY NYATUAK, DISPLACED WIDOW WITH THREE CHILDREN SAYING: "The fighting is because of the petrol oil, the Arabs want to take it from us and it is ours, we need it and we want to develop ourselves, we want to live like humans. The main reasons why we are being bombarded and displaced is the petrol oil." 2.10 15. GV: WIDE OF MANKIEN STREET, PEOPLE WALKING (2 SHOTS) 2.20 16. BOMB CRATER 17. GV/ZOOM IN/CU: UNEXPLODED BOMB IN CRATER 2.33 18. GV/TILT/CU: PAN FROM HUT TO ANOTHER BOMB CRATER (2 SHOTS) 2.48 PORT SUDAN (FILE) 19. GV: OIL EXPORT FACILITY, HELIG OIL FIELDS, OIL PUMPS (6 SHOTS) 3.21 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 2nd March 2000 12:00
- Location: NEAR MAYOM, MANKIEN AND PORT SUDAN, SUDAN
- Country: Sudan
- Reuters ID: LVAEYD5VTJTPCJH6QK9LLHSNZNKL
- Story Text: Hundreds of civilians have been killed and thousands
more displaced in fighting near oilfields in Sudan's Western
Upper Nile Province.
The violence has intensified since Sudan started producing
and exporting oil late last year.
Southern rebels fighting the Khartoum government have
vowed to wrest a giant oil field lying just inside the
boundary of the south from government hands, raising the
stakes in a 17-year-old civil war which has already killed
more than 1.5 million people.
"We are fighting mainly for the oil because we need our
own development for the Southern people," said rebel commander
The south has been totally sidelined since independence.
What little infrastructure it had has been decimated by the
war; there are few medical facilities and virtually no
The rebels are led by Peter Gadet, a former Sudan army
officer who has twice switched sides in the war and is now
loosely allied with the main rebel group the Sudan People's
Liberation Army (SPLA).
His last defection to the rebel side was in September, the
same month a consortium of foreign companies -- Talisman of
Canada and the state oil firms of China and Malaysia -- began
pumping oil through a pipeline to the Red Sea.
The rebels admit being ill-equipped, and they are
outgunned by their enemy, the government, which uses Antonov
bombers and helicopter gunships to attack their positions.
On the other hand, the rebels -- their ranks swollen by
shy boy soldiers -- wear flip-flops, with some barefoot and do
not have a single vehicle to their name.
But far from bringing prosperity to the impoverished Nuer,
the fighting around Mayom has forced thousands of civilians to
flee their homes, leaving their meagre possessions behind.
Most have lost family and their precious livestock as the
government seeks to move them further from the oilfields
The latest round of hostilities is just another chapter in
years of suffering since the U.S.oil company Chevron first
discovered oil in the region in the 1970s.
Scared off by insecurity, the company walked away from its
one billion United States dollar investment a decade later,
but not before tens of thousands of people were cleared from
the area to make way for exploration, local people say.
Mary Nyatuak displaced with three children, lost her
husband in the fighting and puts the blame for the conflict on
the oil fields.
"The fighting is because of the petrol oil, the Arabs want
to take it from us and it is ours, we need it and we want to
develop ourselves, we want to live like humans.The main
reasons why we are being bombarded and displaced is the petrol
oil," she said.
Rebel officials have dismissed claims by the Islamist
government that oil revenues will be spent on the development
of the mainly Christian and animist south, and has promised
the local people of his own Nuer tribe that they will share in
Meanwhile Mankien, where the displaced people have flocked
in the hope of assistance, is under a flight ban from the
government and the United Nations has suspended flights
temporarily due to insecurity.
This means that the displaced people will depend on relief
from a few Non Governmental Organisations who defy the ban
from Khartoum and fly in at their own risk.
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