South Sudan withdraws from oil field

2012-04-22 20:08

Bentiu - South Sudan's army said on Sunday that its troops faced fresh aerial bombardments from Sudan as they completed their pull-out from the flashpoint Heglig oil field.

Juba seized the oil hub on April 10, claiming that Khartoum was using Heglig as a base to attack the South's oil-producing Unity State. Although South Sudan disputes it, Heglig is internationally regarded as part of Sudan.

The South's 10-occupation met widespread criticism, including from UN chief Ban Ki-moon, who called it illegal.

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir on Friday announced his forces would carry out "an orderly withdrawal" from the area. On Sunday, a Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) spokesperson said all southern troops had left.

The SPLA "completed its withdrawal from Heglig yesterday" spokesperson Philip Aguer told AFP.

But, he charged, as the withdrawal was ongoing, Khartoum's air force "continued bombing on the night of the [Friday April] 20th and in the morning of the 21st".

The two sides have offered contradictory explanations for recent developments in Heglig.

On Friday, Sudan said its soldiers had "liberated" the oil field by force, despite, despite Kiir's earlier announcement of a withdrawal.

The South Sudanese UN Ambassador Agnes Oswaha has said Juba decided to withdraw "because it does not wish to see a return to war".

The Heglig violence was the worst since South Sudan won independence in July after a 1983-2005 civil war in which about two million people died.

Not beneficial to China

Tensions have gradually mounted over the disputed border and other unresolved issues, raising fears in recent weeks about concerns of a wider war.

Continental and foreign powers have urged negotiation to avert further escalation, with US President Barack Obama on Friday calling on the two sides to "have the courage to return to the table and negotiate and resolve these issues peacefully".

Kiir heads to China on Monday for an official visit to a country long-considered Khartoum's ally, although Beijing has developed closer ties with Juba, notably in the petroleum sector.

"China's position on that issue is to promote dialogue and urge peace. It does not favour any side," said Li Guangyi, professor at the Institute of African Studies at the University of Xiangtan in central China.

"Fighting is not only not beneficial to them [Sudan and South Sudan], it isn't beneficial to China either," he added.

The African Union (AU), which has for years sought to broker a sustainable peace between the bitter rivals, on Sunday again called for "a complete cessation of all hostilities," and a swift resumption of talks.

Both sides should consider their "responsibility towards their region, the rest of Africa and the larger international community," the AU statement said.

Since the invasion, oil production at Heglig has been shut and facilities there were leaking. Each side accused the other of damaging the oil infrastructure, which accounted for about half of the north's production.

South Sudan formally gained independence from Khartoum in July.

Read more on:    au  |  ban ki-moon  |  salva kiir  |  china  |  sudan  |  south sudan  |  east africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com 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
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Africa: Land of Billionaires!

Find out who are the richest of the richest in Africa!

 
 

Men24.com

Best bro movies 2014
Every man should be able to do these three things
Goalkeeper saves five penalties with his FACE!
Hottie of the day: Jesselyn

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

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!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

24 hour sale – Up to 70% off

Its black Friday, save up to 70% on a wide range of awesome products at kalahari.com. Offers valid while stocks last. T&C’s apply. Shop now!

Save up to 60% on toys!

Don’t miss out on this hot offer, save up to 60% on toys. While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. 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

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Grandiose ideas and plans can trip you up today. Keep things in context and take one step at a time....read more

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

Hello 

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 24.com network.

Settings

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.