Skarkon Station Free Press
Sahaal Protests Turn Violent
By Jerindine Orindold
What was for the last three weeks a peaceful and optimistic protest in the planetary capital of Sahaal has exploded into violence today following the Republic Security Services’ announcement that Krullefor mercenaries were being declared a local security contractor.
Shortly after the announcement, Krullefor forces imposed a lockdown on Sahaal and deployed troops to break up the ongoing protests which had grown to include nearly seventy-five thousand participants. Krullefor mercenaries utilized rubber bullets, flashbangs, tear gas, and sonic riot control weapons to attack the mass of peaceful protesters, inciting widespread anger and creating a swift and violent backlash as protest groups began fighting back against the Krullefor forces. Anger and frustration are at an all-time high and many protesters despair that the window for a peaceful solution has now closed. Rioting and violence have quickly spread outwards across much of Skardisaad in what some are now calling an outright civil war. Battles between Krullefor and local militia forces have erupted in Melorisgard, Kor’ali, and Traadahald as the people of Skarkon push back at what they see as a violent and drastic overreach by republic backed and militarized police forces.
The uneasy cease-fire between the Tronhadar Free Guard and local militia forces in Mahonisgard also came to a violent end today as Tronhadar forces broke through protester lines with military vehicles, quickly turning the small city into a warzone.
Battles continue to rage in Iddiserigard as Spacelane Patrol forces continue their ongoing attempts to retake mines and industrial facilities that have been captured by the Ishohoulvi Freedom Corps, who have been using their local knowledge and terrain advantages to run circles around Spacelane Patrol troops deployed to the area. Although dozens of arrests have been made in Iddiserigard, the fighting continues to be intense and militia forces show no signs of exhaustion.
In Gulormola, Krullefor troops attempted an airborne and amphibious assault across the Gulormola channel while facing fierce opposition from a combined mass of Angel Cartel, Bosena Accords, and UNF forces. Despite intense fighting and steep losses, Krullefor troops did manage to gain a foothold in the harbor and industrial districts of Sa’kak, where they have dug in hard. Sa’kak city administrators have declared the invasion an act of unjustified aggression and clear violation of their local sovereignty and vowed to have the invaders thrown back into the sea. A chemical weapon strike unclaimed by all parties killed nearly a thousand in Sa’kak’s warehouse district to quick denouncements by all involved factions. The identity of the party responsible for the chemical weapon attack and the nature of the chemicals used has yet to be determined but Angel Cartel forces have created a defensive cordon around the area and are working with city administrators to keep the area cleared and prevent further exposure to the unknown contaminant.
Humanitarian groups across Molden Heath and beyond have been quick to denounce the RSS’s operations on Skarkon II as brutal authoritarian overreach. Protests and strikes have continued across Molden Heath into their second week, invigorated by the actions of the Republic and the RSS in particular. As the battle for control of Skarkon II heats up, the conflict is being seen by many as a portent of things to come in the Heath at large. Reporting from Sahaal, I’m Jerindine Orindold and this is the Skarkon Station Free Press.