Khartoum accuses S Sudan in rebel attack

2012-02-27 08:45

  • Reef Fishes and Corals
    This colourful guide contains concise information on 234 reef fish and 36 coral species found along... Now R175.00
    buy now
Khartoum - Khartoum threatened retaliation on Sunday after accusing breakaway South Sudan of backing a rebel attack inside its territory, adding to tensions which have sparked international concern.

Rebels in a "revolutionary front" aimed at toppling the Khartoum regime claimed the attack in the disputed Jau area - part of an oil-rich region on the poorly defined border - as their first joint operation against government forces.

"It is a very big victory," said Arnu Ngutulu Lodi, of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N).

The rebels claimed to have seized three tanks along with hundreds of weapons and vehicles in the joint operation with fighters from Darfur's Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).

"Joint forces managed to surprise them," he said.

Sudan's foreign ministry said rebels accompanied by officers from South Sudan's army launched a "direct attack" on the area six kilometres (four miles) inside the border, in violation of a memorandum on non-aggression and cooperation signed this month.

"Sudan reserves the right according to international law to react to this attack," the ministry said in a statement, adding that it will complain to the UN Security Council and African Union.

It is the latest flare-up over the Jau area and comes after UN chief Ban Ki-moon warned that the crisis between Sudan and South Sudan has become a major threat to regional peace and security.

Grave concern

Britain this month expressed "grave concern at the recent build-up of forces and escalation of tensions in conflict-affected border areas".

The SPLM-N has for several months been fighting in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states along the border with South Sudan.

One analyst has dismissed the Revolutionary Front as "just a name", but Lodi said the joint attack - albeit with a small JEM component - showed their commitment to work together.

"We are not just talking. We are doing it," he told AFP.

Last November, both rebel groups joined with factions of Darfur's Sudan Liberation Army to form the front dedicated to "popular uprising and armed rebellion" against the government in Khartoum.

"This attack is under the umbrella of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front," JEM spokesperson Gibril Adam Bilal told AFP.

Sudan Armed Forces spokesperson Sawarmi Khaled Saad confirmed that the area had come under attack, but he blamed the forces of South Sudan.

"This attack was completely planned and sponsored by the government of South Sudan," he said. "The fighting is going on now."

Neither side could immediately give casualty figures.

Access to the state is restricted, making independent verification difficult.

Bombing of civilians

In December, Sudan accused the South Sudan army of attacking the Jau region, but Juba's military insisted its troops were defending an area on their side of the frontier.

Two weeks ago, Juba said Khartoum had bombed the same area from the air, violating the memorandum on non-aggression and co-operation.

Washington has condemned the "unjustified and unacceptable" bombing of civilians by the Sudanese military in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

South Sudan broke away in July last year after an overwhelming vote for independence following more than two decades of war that killed two million people.

Border tensions have since flared, with each side accusing the other of supporting rebels within its territory, while a major dispute over oil transit fees remains unresolved.

Asked about Khartoum's latest accusations, Juba's information minister, Barnaba Marial Benjamin, said the rebels were Sudan's problem.

"We don't give any support to opposition groups in Sudan," he said.

The ethnic minority insurgents from SPLM-N had previously fought alongside the former rebels now ruling in Juba.

Lodi, the SPLM-N spokesperson, said Sunday's joint attack followed formalisation last week of the Revolutionary Front's structure, and vowed that more combined operations will occur "when appropriate".

JEM and SPLM-N had fought together once before, in August.

Read more on:    jem  |  splm  |  sudan  |  south sudan  |  east africa

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


This is why you should install iOS 8

Check out this video to see what iOS 8 has in store for you!


For chic geeks...

It’s THIS easy for someone to steal your ATM pin!
17 photo illusions that look so real
Check out the speed of this robo-cheetah!
New GIF keyboard on iOS for added fun!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Geometric Design Engineer

Cape Town CBD
Communicate Cape Town Engineering
R400 000 - R700 000 Per Year

Group Accountant

Cape Town CBD
Communicate Midrand Finance
R240 000 - R300 000 Per Year


Cape Town CBD
Callforce Direct
R15 000 - R19 000 Per Month

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now! - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


Don`t judge so quickly or expect too much, be more accepting and understanding and make space for fun and spontaneity. more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.