UN: Thousands flee fighting in Sudan

2014-04-24 20:02

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Khartoum - Thousands of people have fled renewed fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan and Blue Nile states, adding to hundreds of thousands uprooted by conflict in the Darfur region this year, the UN said on Thursday.

Clashes between government forces and the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North in South Kordofan's Rashad district displaced about 6 700 civilians, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its weekly bulletin.

It cited data from Sudan's Humanitarian Aid Commission.

"Many displaced people have sought shelter in Rashad town," OCHA said.

The UN has also received reports that an estimated 4 300 people fled their homes in Blue Nile state because of combat between Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North and government forces, OCHA said.

Almost three years of fighting in South Kordofan and Blue Nile had already displaced or severely affected more than one million people.

Like the 11-year-old insurgency in western Sudan's Darfur region, the Kordofan-Blue Nile war has been fuelled by complaints among non-Arab groups of neglect and discrimination by the Arab-dominated regime.

Khartoum and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North on Tuesday began their latest round of African Union-mediated talks aimed at reaching a peace deal.

The UN says a rising number of people in Sudan - 6.1 million - need humanitarian aid but the percentage of funding obtained to help them has fallen in each of the past three years.

More than 300 000 people have been uprooted by fighting in parts of Darfur since February, OCHA said.

The region has experienced its worst violence in a decade this year.

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