The first group of Ugandans that are being repatriated from South Sudan by the Ugandan army successfully crossed the border to Uganda Friday evening.
This follows fighting in Juba which claimed nearly 300 lives on the eve of the fifth anniversary of independence
Anxiously waiting to get home, the evacuees were crammed into buses and trucks loaded with jerry cans, mattresses and plastic chairs, but were nonetheless exhilarated.
Brigadier Leopold Kyanda, Uganda UPDF military official said the mission went as planned.
"I must say coordination went very very well. Before the convoy left here Thursday we had forces coming all the way from Juba, they came and they joined our convoy, they moved together, and everything went very smoothly. Even when they got ready to come back all the coordination has been done very well," he said.
The convoy of around 200 vehicles including 2,000 troops with heavily armed vehicles is expected to make another more that 600km trip back to South Sudan to fetch more people.
Kyanda said it turns out there's more people than the anticipated 3,000.
" The commander who is here at my right has been briefing me, he says he came with about two thousand people, registered, but there are many more that joined along the way. So the numbers are big, estimated probably another 5,000, 6,000 people,"
Meanwhile dozens of Sudanese women, children and the elderly arrived in KHARTOUM on Friday from Juba as Sudan repatriate its nationals of South Sudan.
Additional flights were scheduled Saturday to carry more people.
Source: Name News Network