Sudan to fight until South withdraws

2012-05-04 22:02

Khartoum - Sudan has stopped fighting inside South Sudan in line with a UN resolution, but will continue battling Southern troops who remain on northern territory, the foreign ministry said on Friday.

"We are not now conducting hostilities inside South Sudan but on our territory we will not halt the fighting until South Sudan's troops withdraw," ministry spokesperson Al-Obeid Meruh told AFP shortly before the 15:00 GMT UN deadline for both sides to cease hostilities.

Both Khartoum and Juba have pledged to seek peace after the UN Security Council passed a resolution on Wednesday giving the two countries 48 hours to stop fighting, including air raids.

"But the other side still has a presence inside our land," army spokesman Sawarmi Khaled Saad said, also shortly before the UN deadline.

He alleged that the Southern army still occupied two points along the border with Darfur, "and this means they haven't stopped hostilities."

Since Southern troops ended their 10-day occupation of Sudan's main oil region of Heglig last month, Sudanese officials have repeatedly stated that South Sudanese "aggression" continues in the form of direct occupation of other disputed areas along the border, and by supporting rebel groups inside Sudan.

Sudan accuses the South of backing anti-government rebels from its conflict-hit western region of Darfur as well as those fighting in South Kordofan state and Blue Nile.

The South denies backing opposition movements inside Sudan, and accuses Khartoum, in turn, of supporting rebels south of the border.

Under Wednesday's UN Security Council Resolution, Sudan and South Sudan are also required to stop supporting insurgents in each other's territory.

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