Posts Tagged ‘khartoum sudan’

Sudan Declares Emergency On Border With South

Posted: April 29, 2012 by PaanLuel Wël in Sudan
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By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

KHARTOUM, Sudan April 29, 2012

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Sudan declared a state of emergency Sunday in areas bordering South Sudan, giving authorities wide powers of arrest a day after they detained three foreigners in a flashpoint town along the frontier.

The detentions and state of emergency heightened tensions even further along border between the old rivals, who in the past month came to the brink of an all-out war because of renewed fighting in disputed areas.

Sudanese officials have accused South Sudan of using foreigner fighters during its assault on the oil-rich Heglig region, which Sudan claims. Southern Sudanese troops briefly captured the area, amid rising international concerns of an escalation in the fighting between the two countries.

Sudanese army spokesman Col. Sawarmy Khaled claimed on state television late Saturday that four people arrested in the Heglig region, including a Briton, a Norwegian, a South African and a South Sudanese, had military backgrounds. He alleged they were carrying out military activities in Heglig, but did not elaborate. Khaled said the arrests prove its government claims that South Sudan uses foreign fighters.

But a representative for one of the three said Sunday that they were on a humanitarian mine-clearing mission.

South Sudan split from Sudan in July last year , but the two countries have yet to agree on border demarcation and divvying up oil revenues and resources.

South Sudan invaded Heglig earlier this month, saying it belonged to the south. Sudan later retook the town; Sudanese forces say they pushed out the South Sudanese while South Sudan says its troops pulled out to avoid an all-out war. Sudan elevated the tension even further by bombing South Sudan.

In Oslo, a Norwegian humanitarian organization said Sunday that one of its employees, 50-year-old John Soerboe, was detained while on a five-day mine-clearing mission in southern Sudan with the Briton and South African.

The group denied he was on a military mission and said he had been working for more than seven years to clear the region of mines.

The Norwegian People’s Aid organization called Soerboe “one of our most experienced aid workers.” Per Nergaard, the group’s head of emergency preparedness, said Soerboe used to be in the Norwegian military years ago before turning to humanitarian work. He had been working in southern Sudan since 2005.

He said in a statement on the group’s website that Soerboe was on a “routine” mission, with the representatives from South Sudan and U.N. anti-mine organizations, in a region that borders Sudan.

Nergaard did not know the names of the others arrested, or have details about the incident. They were taken by Sudanese authorities to Khartoum, he said.

“The circumstance surrounding their arrest and exact location at the time is yet unclear,” he said.

“Our main priority now is to ensure that Soerboe and his colleagues are safe and to assure their rapid release. We are working closely with the Norwegian Foreign Ministry and our U.N. partners to assure this,” Nergaard said.

The Norwegian organization has been working in the area since 1986, he added.

A spokesman for the Norwegian Foreign Ministry, Frode O. Andersen, said Oslo “had demanded access to the Norwegian citizen.”

“We have asked for a clarification on why he was arrested, and we want to find out the charges against him,” Andersen said.

Britain’s Foreign Office confirmed a British national had been detained and said it was “urgently investigating” the details of the arrests. The ministry said it had requested immediate access to the Briton, but had no other details.

The South African Foreign Ministry said Sunday it is following up on reports of the arrest of a South African man in a mine clearing detail near the South Sudan border.

Associated Press writers Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Denmark, David Stringer in London, and Angus Shaw in Harare, Zimbabwe contributed to this report.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=151641535

Sudan Declares Emergency On Border With South
NPR
by AP KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Sudan declared a state of emergency Sunday in areas borderingSouth Sudan, giving authorities wide powers of arrest a day after they detained three foreigners in a flashpoint town along the frontier.
South Sudan says 21 dead in clash with Sudanese-backed militia
Reuters Africa
JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudan, embroiled in a border dispute with its northern neighbour Sudan, said on Sunday at least 21 people died in two days of clashes between the South’s army and Khartoum-backed rebels in the South’s oil-producing Upper Nile 
State Of Emergency Raises The Stakes In Sudan
Capital Public Radio News
By Melisa Goh Sudan has declared a state of emergency as tensions mount along the disputed border it shares with its new neighbor, South Sudan. Are the two nations headed for war? Sudan has declared a state of emergency as tensions mount along the 
Sudan says detained foreigners have military ties
NewsOK.com
KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Sudan has claimed three foreigners arrested in a disputed area on the border with South Sudan had military hardware and an armored vehicle. But a representative for one of the three said Sunday that they were on a humanitarian 
Fresh Attacks On Juba’s Troops
AllAfrica.com
By Arne Doornebal, 29 April 2012 Panakuac — Fresh fighting has broken out on Sunday at the frontline between the armies of Sudan and South Sudan. Just when an RNW correspondent visitedSouth Sudanese troops at their positions at Panakuac, 
Juba Official Calls for Removal of Mbeki From Mediation Process
AllAfrica.com
Juba — South Sudanese officials and senior figures of the ruling party in Juba on Saturday added to calls for the removal of Thabo Mbeki, the chair of the African Union High Implementation Panel which has been mediating conflict resolution talks 
In Sudan and South Sudan, questions of nationality
Reuters
He was born in the southern part of Sudan but has lived in the north for more than three decades. When South Sudan broke away as an independent country from Sudan in July, Kwaje was left on the northern side of the border, a foreigner.
South African UN worker held in Sudan
Times LIVE
South Sudan soldier walks at a ruptured oil well in South Sudan’s Unity State.South Sudan has been embroiled in cross-border violence with Sudan that the UN says is threatening world peace. Within 24hours of a South African being killed in Somalia 
Sudan declares state of emergency in border areas
WTOP
President Salva Kiir, centre, arrives at the John Garang Masoleum in Juba, Sudan, Friday, April 27, 2012, as he is welcomed back to the country by his supporters after an official visit to China. South Sudan and Sudan have clashed for the past three 

 

China offers South Sudan $8 bln in development funds
Reuters
JUBA, April 28 (Reuters) – China has offered South Sudan $8 billion in development funds for road, hydropower, infrastructure and agriculture projects, South Sudan’s information minister told Reuters on Saturday. The loan came after South Sudan 
Sudan army captures four foreigners
ABC Online
“This confirms what we said before, that South Sudan in its aggression against Heglig was supported by foreign experts,” he said. But Jan Ledang, country director for the Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) mission in South Sudan, says they were not in the 
SOUTH SUDAN DENIES ACCUSATIONS THAT FOREIGNERS
Chicago Tribune
SOUTH SUDAN DENIES ACCUSATIONS THAT FOREIGNERS ARRESTED BY KHARTOUM WERE AIDING SOUTH SUDAN ARMY.
SOUTH SUDAN ARMY SAYS UN TRUCK GOT LOST IN
Chicago Tribune
SOUTH SUDAN ARMY SAYS UN TRUCK GOT LOST IN BORDER AREA AND WAS STOPPED BY SUDANESE ARMY.
Political Tensions Mount Between Sudans
NPR
Hostilities have grown increasingly violent between Sudan and South Sudan over border issues and oil wealth. Host Scott Simon talks with NPR’s Ofeibea Quist-Arcton about the latest on the conflict. This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News.
Fleeing violence, Sudanese make homes amid rocks
msnbc.com (blog)
A couple stands in front of their shelter in Bram village in the Nuba Mountains in SouthKordofan, Sudan, April 28. Fleeing aerial bombardment by the Sudanese air force thousands of people have abandoned their homes and made make-shift shelters between 
South Sudan`s application to join EAC delayed to November
IPPmedia
East African Community (EAC) heads of state on Saturday directed the Council of Ministers to come up with a verification report by November, this year, regarding an admission request of South Sudan to join the five-nation regional bloc.
Kiir says China to loan South Sudan $8 million
Sudan Tribune
April 28,2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan’s president Salva Kiir has described his recent visit to China as “positive” and said China has agreed to loan South Sudan US$8 billion for infrastructure development. Speaking at a press briefing on Saturday, 
Sudan defends use of air strikes in South Sudan conflict
Reuters
KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudan’s ambassador to the United Nations has defended his country’s right to use air strikes against South Sudanese troops who Khartoum says are inside Sudanese territory. Dafallah ElHaj Ali Osman, however, stopped short of saying 
South Sudan says to withdraw all police from Abyei
Reuters
JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudan has told the United Nations it plans to withdraw all its police personnel from the disputed Abyei region, according to a letter from the country’s permanent mission to the world body. The decision was taken at a cabinet 
Insecurity threatens South Sudan EAC bid
The Citizen Daily
They said recurrent conflict between Sudan and South Sudan should not be tolerated because of its potential dire consequences to the wider eastern Africa. “The return to war in Sudan is a matter of deep concern. We appeal to the warring parties to 
South Sudan says to withdraw police from Abyei
Reuters AlertNet
JUBA, April 29 (Reuters) – South Sudan has told the United Nations it would withdraw all its police from the disputed Abyei region, according to a letter from the country’s mission to the world body.South Sudan, embroiled in more than three weeks of 
SOUTH SUDAN SAYS TO WITHDRAW ALL POLICE PERSONNEL
Chicago Tribune
SOUTH SUDAN SAYS TO WITHDRAW ALL POLICE PERSONNEL FROM DISPUTED ABYEI REGION-LETTER TO UN SECURITY COUNCIL.
South Sudan says to quit border zone, seeks end to clashes
Reuters
By Yara Bayoumy | JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudan has told the United Nations it will pull all police out of a disputed region bordering Sudan and is committed to halting all fighting with its northern neighbor, but Khartoum declared a state of emergency 
Sudan president declares state of emergency along southern border
KTBS
The president of Sudan declared a state of emergency Sunday for cities along the hotly contested border with South Sudan, where Sudanese fighter jets launched at least one attack against their neighbor’s ground forces. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir 
SOUTH SUDAN SAYS COMMITTED TO “IMMEDIATE CESSATION
Chicago Tribune
SOUTH SUDAN SAYS COMMITTED TO “IMMEDIATE CESSATION OF ALL HOSTILITIES” WITH SUDAN-LETTER TO UN.
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Young men herd cattle through the mud-caked streets of Pibor, as cattle raiding between some of the south's dozens of tribes plagues South Sudan. (File Photo)

Photo: AP
Young men herd cattle through the mud-caked streets of Pibor, as cattle raiding between some of the south’s dozens of tribes plagues South Sudan. (File Photo)

The South Sudanese Army is being readied to deploy on a small-arms disarmament program in Jonglei state. The government hopes to disarm groups of cattle raiders that have made 2012 a violent year for the new country.

The Southern People’s Liberation Army is being set to deploy in areas of Jonglei state this week, in an attempt to disarm and collect some 20,000 small arms from the Murle and Lou Nuer tribes.

Both groups have been involved in a violent string of retaliatory cattle rattles, which the United Nations says has affected more than 120,000 people.

The disarmament campaign was initiated by South Sudan President Salva Kirr. He plans to use the Army to collect the weapons either voluntarily or by force.

The SPLA spokesperson Phillip Aguer says the goal is peaceful, but the army is ready to use force, if necessary.

“In case there are people who are dodging and trying to hide their weapons, the army will intervene and do the fighting or, if they are running from the army and the police, we will go in,” said Aguer.

South Sudan has received criticism from both the United States and the United Nations. They feel conducting the campaign now will only increase tensions and that the government should strive for reconciliation before disarmament.

But Aguer says the time is now.

“If you wait for the population to achieve it’s goals and objectives, you will have people attacking themselves and dying,” said Aguer. “So it’s better to do the same process concurrently.”

Jonah Leff is a consultant for the Small Arms Survey – an independent organization monitoring international weapons trafficking – and has recently been on the ground in Jonglei state. He feels the campaign will certainly end in violence.

“I’ve heard from leaders of both communities, both the Lou Nuer and the Murle, that they will resist a forcible disarmament, which means that they will fight back,” said Leff. “So I would expect the SPLA to respond with technicals [technological advanced weapons]. They’ll have greater manpower, such as heavy machine guns and possibly even tanks.”

Leff also fears the possibility of disarming the tribes unevenly, which may leave some vulnerable to attack.

“Without proper security provision by the SPLA or security forces, the rival tribe would most likely come in and take advantage of the situation,” said Leff.

In the past, disarmament programs in the area have resulted in violence and have proved to be largely unsuccessful.

“In 2006 and 2008, they collected a fraction of the weapons and quickly thereafter, the communities had rearmed anyways,” said Leff. “So I’m not sure that, if they don’t provide any alternative security, they can collect as many weapons as they want and the communities will go and rearms themselves and the situation will be as it is.”

For now, the rural skirmishes continue to trouble the new country

http://www.voanews.com/english/news/South-Sudanese-Army-set-to-Deploy-on-Disarmament-Program-in-Jonglei-141556393.html

South Sudanese Army to Implement Jonglei Disarmament Program
Voice of America
March 06, 2012 South Sudanese Army to Implement Jonglei Disarmament Program Alex Pena | Nairobi The South Sudanese Army is being readied to deploy on a small-arms disarmament program in Jonglei state. The government hopes to disarm groups of cattle 

Hundreds flee fresh violence on Sudan-South Sudan border
Reuters AlertNet
GENEVA, March 6 (UNHCR) – Hundreds of people have been fleeing to South Sudan’s Upper Nile state and western Ethiopia to escape renewed fighting in disputed border areas between Sudan andSouth Sudan. Last week, UNHCR staff registered 2287 new arrivals 

Washington Deludes Rebels They Can Topple the Regime – Nafie
AllAfrica.com
According to Nafie Ali Nafie, presidential assistant and NCP’s deputy chairman, Washington persuaded the rebel SPLM-N that it can make Kadugli “Sudan’s Benghazi” and transform the SouthKordofan’s town to make it the capital for rebels who will 

Sudan: Opposition parties call for president Bashir to stop waging war and 
Afrika
Nairobi (Kenya) – Plans by South Sudan to build an alternative pipeline through Kenya are expecte… Read more > Khartoum (Sudan) — The International Conference of the Great Lakes region (ICGLR) designated two … Read more > London (UK) — Rebels 

Alltopics.com Presents 5 News Sources on Countries
San Francisco Chronicle (press release)
Alltopics.com has created a new section on Countries in its amazing database, including Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan, which are available for instant access on our website. Today, after months of hard work, alltopics.com is the 
Sudan: Back On Track – Journey ‘Home’ to South Sudan
AllAfrica.com
By Nahla Abu-Eissa, 5 March 2012 Khartoum, Sudan — After months of living in limbo, some 1400 southern Sudanese recently started the long journey to South Sudan on board the year’s first southbound train from the Sudan capital of Khartoum.

South Sudanese in Khartoum’s camps of no return
The Africa Report
By Prince Ofori-Atta and Goeff Magga More than 7000 South Sudanese refugees, mostly women and children seeking to return to their recently independent country are living in severe conditions in camps in and around Khartoum and need “urgent assistance”.

Museveni wants S Sudan crude pipeline to Kenya’s Port Lamu to go through Uganda
Platts
Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has said that it would be better if South Sudan’s proposed oil pipeline to transport the country’s crude to Port Lamu in Kenya passes through Uganda, Uganda’s local media reported Tuesday.
South Sudan army vows to remove illicit firearms from civil population
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang March 5, 2012 (JUBA) – The South Sudan army, the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) has announced its readiness to conduct the ”peaceful” collection of illegal arms from the civil population across the country but primarily in 
Petronas denies South Sudan oil theft claim
Business Times – Malaysia
Malaysian state-owned oil giant Petronas today denied any knowledge of alleged oil theft by the consortium it belongs to which is in the middle of a bitter dispute between Sudan and South Sudan. Petronas is a major shareholder in Petrodar along with 
Student presents research at UN
K-State Collegian
The research, which explored literacy rates in South Sudan, will be applied as a part of program on improving the system of education in the African country. Pearson came to K-State from New York City, where she was teaching at a school in Harlem.

Sudanese Economy Reels With Loss of Oil Income
Jakarta Globe
Khartoum, SudanSudan has lost billions of dollars in oil receipts since the south gained independence last year and is plagued by soaring prices and a weakening currency, with no economic solution in sight for the bankrupt nation, analysts say…

Clashes break out in Sudan’s South Kordofan
Emirates 24/7
South Sudanese and Sudanese forces clashed in a poorly-defined border area on Sunday, the Sudanese military said, the latest outbreak of violence to put a recently signed non-aggression pact into question. “Forces from South Sudan and rebels from South 

Battling Sudan’s Bombs With Videos
New York Times
It was Boyette who smuggled me into the Nuba Mountains, driving his Toyota Land Cruiser on a rutted dirt track from South Sudan, at one point just a couple of miles from Sudanese military lines. He has set up a network of local citizen journalists who

UN int’l staff return to restive Sudan region
Sacramento Bee
AP KHARTOUM, Sudan — The United Nations in Sudan says its international staff is returning to a disputed region on the border with south Sudan, after a nearly half-year absence from the restive area. The UN office in Khartoum said in a statement 

Sudanese Rebels Sign Deal for Aid in Two Embattled States

BusinessWeek – ‎
By Jared Ferrie Feb. 24 (Bloomberg) — A Sudanese rebel group said it signed an agreement with the government to allow aid into rebel- controlled areas in two border states where the US says half a million people may face famine conditions.
Bloomberg – ‎
A Sudanese rebel group said it signed an agreement with the government to allow aid into rebel- controlled areas in two border states where the US says half a million people may face famine conditions. The accord, signed on Feb.
Shanghai Daily (subscription) – ‎
KHARTOUM, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) — The Sudanese government on Sunday announced its decision to file an complaint to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the African Union (AU) against South Sudan regarding an attack in Al-Abiyad border area.
Shanghai Daily (subscription) –
KHARTOUM, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) — The Sudanese army on Sunday said armed clashes broke out between its forces and South Sudan forces at Jao area on the border between Sudan-South Sudan. “An alliance bringing together South Sudan’s army and rebels from 
Sudan Tribune –
February 25, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese presidential assistant Nafie Ali Nafie blasted those who are sympathetic with the rebel alliance saying they don’t represent any weight within the Sudanese society. Nafie made the remarks while addressing the 
Sudan Tribune – ‎‎
By Ngor Arol Garang February 25, 2012 (JUBA) – A South Sudanese opposition groups has criticised austerity measures introduced by government to adjust the loss of oil revenues, after the young country stopped exporting its oil through north Sudan…
Truck Drivers End Three-day Barricade of S. Sudan Border
Sudan Vision
Border traffic to and fro South Sudan has resumed after a three-day strike by truck drivers from Kenya, Somalia and Tanzanaia that paralysed movement in the area. The heavy truck drivers have been protesting what they called ‘unfair treatment’ by South
Farming getting tough in South Sudan
Press TV
Farming in South Sudan had once seemed to be an easy thing, but not anymore. For even though it has been sought as the alternative source of income to the country that has fertile soil covering more than 90% of its territory and can produce crops for ..
South Sudan opposition demands foreign business pay taxes amid austerity and 
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang February 25, 2012 (JUBA) – A South Sudanese opposition groups has criticised austerity measures introduced by government to adjust the loss of oil revenues, after the young country stopped exporting its oil through north Sudan.

South Sudan president blames Khartoum for insecurity
Sudan Tribune
February 25, 2012 (BOR) – South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir Mayardit accused north Sudan – from which the new country seceded last year – attempting to turn the world’s youngest country into a failed state. Even before South Sudan’s referendum on 

Team succeeds with well installation in South Sudan
Marshalltown Times Republican
BY MIKE DONAHEY – Staff Writer (mdonahey@timesrepublican.com) , Times-Republican Editor’s Note: Writer Mike Donahey of Marshalltown was part of a team that traveled to and worked in Old Fangak, South Sudan recently to provide clean drinking water.

Truck drivers end three-day barricade of S. Sudan border
Daily Monitor
The drivers had used heavy trucks to barricade the roads to South Sudan protesting alleged mistreatment by South Sudan officials Border traffic to and fro South Sudan has resumed after a three-day strike by truck drivers from Kenya, 

South Sudan forms panel to halve national budget after oil shutdown
Platts
South Sudan’s President Salva Mayardit has formed a committee which will decide how to limit spending, as the government seeks to cut the annual budget by a half following the shutdown of its entire oil production, a government statement said Thursday.

Nicholas D. Kristof: Dodging bombers in Sudan
San Jose Mercury News
Sudan has barred aid workers and journalists from the area, the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan, in a largely successful effort to conceal savagery that has echoes of Darfur. Like many others, I’ve denounced President Bashar Assad of Syria for his 

In the suffering of Sudan’s Nuba, echoes of Darfur
The Seattle Times
Syndicated columnist Nicholas D. Kristof witnesses firsthand a mass atrocity that has attracted little attention: Sudan’s government starving, massacring, raping and bombing its people in the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan, all in hopes of crushing a 

Kristof: Rutted track leads to the latest hell on earth

Anchorage Daily News –
By NICHOLAS KRISTOF IN THE NUBA MOUNTAINS, Sudan — We heard the whine of a bomber overhead, and the families I was interviewing suddenly scrambled to their feet. Like starving people everywhere, they had seemed listless, their bodies conserving every 
Sudan accuses South Sudan of plotting against it
UPI.com
KHARTOUM, Sudan, Feb. 23 (UPI) — Sudanese presidential assistant Nafie Ali Nafie has accusedSouth Sudan’s negotiators of scheming to overthrow Sudan’s government. Nafie made the allegation following a meeting Wednesday with a visiting Norwegian 
China urges dialogue in South Sudan dispute with oil firms
Reuters UK
BEIJING Feb 22 (Reuters) – China on Thursday urged dialogue between South Sudan and Chinese oil firms following the expulsion this week of the head of Chinese-Malaysian oil consortium Petrodar, in its first comments on an escalating row.
UN hopes to access Sudan war zone with AU, Arabs
AFP
More than 360000 people have been internally displaced or severely affected by the fighting that began last June in South Kordofan state and later in Blue Nile, the United Nations says. With Sudan severely restricting the work of foreign relief 

Sudan mourns musical icon Wardi

By Ian Timberlake (AFP) – 

Mourners carry the body of Wardi, who returned from self-imposed exile in 2002 (AFP, Ebrahim Hamid)

KHARTOUM — Sudan mourned on Sunday the death of musical icon Mohammed Wardi, a former prisoner who spent years in self-imposed exile but who died on home soil after seeing his beloved nation divided.

“Mohammed Osman Wardi, Sudan’s lead singer, passed away… in Khartoum,” the official SUNA news agency said in a brief dispatch.

Wardi was born in 1932 on the island of Sawarda in far-northern Sudan. He began singing at the age of five, had his first hit in 1960, and still filled a Khartoum concert hall on New Year’s Eve 2010, when he was carried on stage for a rare show in his twilight years.

“Everybody in Sudan loves Mohammed Wardi,” a man from the western Darfur region said.

The Sudanese political activist group Girifna wrote in an online post that it “is saddened by the death of one of Sudan’s revolutionary icons.”

President Omar al-Bashir, cabinet ministers and musicians were among thousands who gathered to pay their respects to Wardi early Sunday when he was buried at a central Khartoum cemetery.

Wardi had gone into self-imposed exile shortly after Bashir, an army officer, seized power in a 1989 coup backed by Islamists.

The singer moved to Egypt and then Los Angeles to receive medical treatment for kidney trouble.

Tens of thousands of Sudanese greeted him at the airport when he first returned in 2002, vowing no retreat from the leftist views often heard in his moving songs.

“I am a human being, and every human being is against dictatorship and I will continue to denounce it,” he told AFP in June 2002.

“The atmosphere does not encourage creation. Freedom is essential to the blossoming of art.”

He said he did not regret the time he spent in detention under former president Gaafar al-Nimeiry, who took power in 1971 after a three-day communist coup which Wardi applauded. The singer was jailed for 18 months.

Wardi sang patriotic as well as romantic songs about the Nile River and everyday Sudanese life in Arabic and his native Nubian dialect Halfawi.

Just over a year ago, he told AFP that the 2005 peace deal which ended 22 years of civil war with southern Sudan had encouraged his return with hope for “the unity of all Sudan.”

But, speaking with sadness just before South Sudan voted overwhelming for independence, he said he had been singing about a united nation for more than five decades and he hoped “that even if south Sudan chooses secession, one day it will reunite with the north”.

The South became independent last July.

Political analyst Magdi El Gizouli wrote in a tribute that Wardi “will be missed”, not only in Sudan but around the region.

“His legacy… extends beyond music,” Gizouli said.

He recalled hearing Wardi’s songs over loudspeakers as a school student and said the lyrics “were probably a primer in political education.”

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hmTXnGjVm9Ph6XMb17K6RlycKDMQ?docId=CNG.0da26a67d1722e0e7b5d87bdd30d9048.3c1

Iconic Sudanese singer Mohammed Wardi, who popularized Nubian music, dies at age 80

By Associated Press, Updated: Sunday, February 19

KHARTOUM, Sudan— Famed Sudanese singer Mohammed Osman Wardi, who popularized the music of his native Nubia, died Saturday at the age of 80, the state media reported.The reports said the singer died of kidney complications in a Khartoum hospital. His funeral early Sunday was aired live on state television, despite his strained relation with the country’s Islamist government.
Wardi, who hailed from Sudan’s northern region of Nubia, played traditional instruments such as the stringed oud and the tambour drums but also sang to more modern instrumental arrangements. He is credited with pioneering a focus on the musical accompaniment of his pieces, as opposed to earlier generations of singers who concentrated on vocals and lyrics.His repertoire included love songs as well as more politicized pieces favoring Sudanese independence and later uprisings against military regimes in 1964 and 1986.He was associated with Sudan’s political left. He went into exile following the 1983 imposition of Islamic law codes by then-President Gaafar Numeiri, but returned to Sudan in the last decade, still keeping his distance from the government.His fame extends to neighboring African countries including Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia.Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle-east/iconic-sudanese-singer-mohammed-wardi-who-popularized-nubian-music-dies-at-age-80/2012/02/19/gIQA7Fz5MR_story.html

Associated Press

 
Iconic Sudanese singer Mohammed Wardi dies

Sunday, February 19, 2012

(02-19) 03:15 PST KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) —

Famed Sudanese singer Mohammed Osman Wardi, who popularized the music of his native Nubia, died Saturday at the age of 80, the state media reported.

The reports said the singer died of kidney complications in a Khartoum hospital. His funeral early Sunday was aired live on state television, despite his strained relation with the country’s Islamist government.

Wardi, who hailed from Sudan’s northern region of Nubia, played traditional instruments such as the stringed oud and the tambour drums but also sang to more modern instrumental arrangements. He is credited with pioneering a focus on the musical accompaniment of his pieces, as opposed to earlier generations of singers who concentrated on vocals and lyrics.

His repertoire included love songs as well as more politicized pieces favoring Sudanese independence and later uprisings against military regimes in 1964 and 1986.

He was associated with Sudan’s political left. He went into exile following the 1983 imposition of Islamic law codes by then-President Gaafar Numeiri, but returned to Sudan in the last decade, still keeping his distance from the government.

His fame extends to neighboring African countries including Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia.


Sudan and South Sudan Fail to End Oil Dispute

By ISMA’IL KUSHKUSH

Published: February 17, 2012

KHARTOUM, Sudan — Negotiations between Sudan and South Sudan over billions of gallons of oil have ended with very little progress, prolonging a dispute that is undermining the fragile economies of both nations and straining the tenuous peace between them after decades of war.

“There was nothing new,” Yahia Hussein, a member of Sudan’s negotiating team, said Thursday after returning from the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, where the negotiations were being held.

Sudan and South Sudan have been locked in a series of talks since the south seceded and became independent last July. The highly volatile issues to be resolved include the demarcation of the border separating the nations, the status of citizens in each country and, most thorny of all, oil.

Most of the oil is in South Sudan, a landlocked nation, so the pipelines and the facilities to export it are in the north, requiring the two sides, which fought one of Africa’s longest and deadliest civil wars, to cooperate.

Both nations depend enormously on the oil revenues, but the distance between them is wide. Sudan is demanding a $36 per barrel fee, citing the costs of processing the oil and various fees and services. South Sudan says that it would pay only the transit fees, putting the cost at $3 per barrel.

Last month, South Sudan stopped its oil production in protest, accusing Sudan of stealing $815 million worth of oil and announcing that it would seek to construct alternative pipelines to Kenya and Djibouti. Sudan argued that it was taking its fees “in kind” because it had not received any payments for transit since July.

Mr. Hussein, the negotiator, stated that the government of South Sudan “was willing to start re-exporting its oil through Sudan on the condition of reaching a final agreement.”

But Nhial Deng Nhial, South Sudan’s foreign minister, appeared to be less optimistic.

“The gulf is still huge,” he said in a statement, according to Agence France-Presse. “I don’t know if it can be bridged.”

Abdelwahab El-Affendi, a professor at the University of Westminster in London, said oil would be the most difficult issue to resolve. “The southern leadership has unleashed powerful nationalist sentiments over the oil issue, which would be difficult to contain and would constrain the leadership’s ability to make concessions in the short term,” Professor El-Affendi said.

Still, negotiations over the borders seem to have achieved some progress. Mr. Hussein said the two sides had agreed to start marking the borders immediately, an process that should take about three months.

Sudan and South Sudan share a long border with a number of disputed areas. Seeking to calm fears of renewed conflict, Sudan and South Sudan signed a nonaggression agreement last Friday, but just days later South Sudan accused Sudan of bombing a border town and killing four soldiers, an accusation Sudan denies.

The two sides must also deal with matters of citizenship. In April, at the end of an initial transition period, South Sudanese who live in Sudan will be classified as foreigners, and vice versa. Tens of thousands of South Sudanese seeking to go south have been stuck in the river city of Kosti, and South Sudanese officials accuse Sudan of hindering their return. Mr. Hussein denied the charge.

The African panel that has been mediating the talks under the leadership of former President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa had helped improve the “mood of talks,” Mr. Hussein said.

“There was less verbal abuse from their side,” he said, smiling.

At some point, Professor El-Affendi said, the negotiators will have to deal with the conflicts in the Sudanese states of Blue Nile and South Kordofan, which share borders with South Sudan and whose leaders have historical ties with the regions.

But, he said, “this war is not even on the agenda in the Addis Ababa talks, since it is regarded as an ‘internal issue’ for the north,” he said. The problem, he noted, is that “when the real issue is not talked about, you cannot hope to resolve other issues.”

Last year, conflict in both states broke out when rebels who previously fought with the south took up arms against the Sudanese government in Khartoum. Sudan accuses South Sudan of supporting them. Without a cease-fire in those conflicts, “not much progress can be hoped for,” Professor el-Affendi said.

A new round of negotiations has been set for the end of this month.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/18/world/africa/sudan-and-south-sudan-fail-to-end-oil-dispute.html?_r=1

Sudan Plans to Resume Oil Talks With South Sudan By Month-End

BusinessWeek
15 (Bloomberg) — Sudan expects to resume talks with South Sudan by the end of this month to try to end a dispute over oil payments after failing to make a breakthrough at the latest round of discussions, a negotiator from the north said.

Sacked South Sudanese block Khartoum road, hurl rocks
Reuters Africa
KHARTOUM (Reuters) – South Sudanese fired from their government jobs in neighbouring Sudan blocked a major road in Sudan’s capital Khartoum on Wednesday, hurling rocks at passing cars and demanding severance benefits, witnesses said.

Priests Released amid Wave of Abductions in Sudan
ChristianNewsToday.com
KHARTOUM, Sudan – Two Catholic priests abducted at gunpoint in Rabak, Sudan last month have been released amid a wave of forcible conscriptions into rebel southern militias. Their captors –South Sudanese militiamen loyal to (north) Sudan’s Islamic 

South Sudan accuses Khartoum of violating Addis Ababa deal
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang February 14, 2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Tuesday accused Khartoum of violating the recently signed memorandum of understanding on non-aggression and cooperation, by preventing the movement of barges back to Juba.

   

Sudan Plans to Resume Oil Talks With South Sudan By Month-End

BusinessWeek
15 (Bloomberg) — Sudan expects to resume talks with South Sudan by the end of this month to try to end a dispute over oil payments after failing to make a breakthrough at the latest round of discussions, a negotiator from the north said.

Sacked South Sudanese block Khartoum road, hurl rocks
Reuters Africa
KHARTOUM (Reuters) – South Sudanese fired from their government jobs in neighbouring Sudan blocked a major road in Sudan’s capital Khartoum on Wednesday, hurling rocks at passing cars and demanding severance benefits, witnesses said.

Priests Released amid Wave of Abductions in Sudan
ChristianNewsToday.com
KHARTOUM, Sudan – Two Catholic priests abducted at gunpoint in Rabak, Sudan last month have been released amid a wave of forcible conscriptions into rebel southern militias. Their captors –South Sudanese militiamen loyal to (north) Sudan’s Islamic 

South Sudan accuses Khartoum of violating Addis Ababa deal
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang February 14, 2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Tuesday accused Khartoum of violating the recently signed memorandum of understanding on non-aggression and cooperation, by preventing the movement of barges back to Juba.



South Sudan challenges Khartoum to produce backup for high fees demanded
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang February 15, 2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Wednesday said the government of neighboring Sudan has “failed” to produce genuine reasons that support their demand for high charges in return for using the oil pipelines passing through 

Sudan Oil Talks End With Recriminations, Large Rift
Voice of America
February 15, 2012 Sudan Oil Talks End With Recriminations, Large Rift Peter Heinlein | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia South Sudan has threatened to keep the oil pipeline to the Red Sea shut permanently following a failed round of talks on sharing revenues with 

South Sudan denounces barge ban
News24
Juba – South Sudan said on Wednesday Khartoum’s decision to stop the return of hundreds of thousands of Southerners by barge on the White Nile was a looming disaster, and that alternative means were untenable. Sudan early this week halted the use of 

South Sudan: Khartoum Violates Non-Aggression Pact
Voice of America
February 14, 2012 South Sudan: Khartoum Violates Non-Aggression Pact Peter Heinlein | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia South Sudan is accusing neighboring Sudan of bombing southern targets, days after the two sides signed a non-aggression deal…

Little Progress in Sudan, South Sudan Oil Talks
Voice of America (blog)
Talks aimed at ending a bitter oil dispute between Sudan and South Sudan have ended without agreement. The six-day talks in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, finished early Wednesday. South Sudanese officials said late Tuesday that the sides remain far 

 

South Sudan challenges Khartoum to produce backup for high fees demanded
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang February 15, 2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Wednesday said the government of neighboring Sudan has “failed” to produce genuine reasons that support their demand for high charges in return for using the oil pipelines passing through 

Sudan Oil Talks End With Recriminations, Large Rift
Voice of America
February 15, 2012 Sudan Oil Talks End With Recriminations, Large Rift Peter Heinlein | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia South Sudan has threatened to keep the oil pipeline to the Red Sea shut permanently following a failed round of talks on sharing revenues with 

South Sudan denounces barge ban
News24
Juba – South Sudan said on Wednesday Khartoum’s decision to stop the return of hundreds of thousands of Southerners by barge on the White Nile was a looming disaster, and that alternative means were untenable. Sudan early this week halted the use of 

South Sudan: Khartoum Violates Non-Aggression Pact
Voice of America
February 14, 2012 South Sudan: Khartoum Violates Non-Aggression Pact Peter Heinlein | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia South Sudan is accusing neighboring Sudan of bombing southern targets, days after the two sides signed a non-aggression deal.

Little Progress in Sudan, South Sudan Oil Talks
Voice of America (blog)
Talks aimed at ending a bitter oil dispute between Sudan and South Sudan have ended without agreement. The six-day talks in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, finished early Wednesday. South Sudanese officials said late Tuesday that the sides remain far 

Sven Torfinn for The New York Times

Several development and construction projects in Khartoum came to a standstill. Sudan’s once fast-growing economy has plummeted since July, when South Sudan broke off and became an independent country, taking billions of dollars of oil with it.

By JEFFREY GETTLEMAN

KHARTOUM, Sudan — Sudan and the breakaway nation of South Sudan are locked in an exceedingly dangerous game of brinkmanship over billions of gallons of oil, seizing tankers, shutting down wells and imperiling the tenuous, American-backed peace that has held — just barely — between the two countries after decades of war.

Not for years have north-south relations been so poisonous, with a proxy war between the two nations that has already flared into direct Sudan-South Sudan clashes. The jagged, disputed frontier separating Sudan from its newly independent neighbor is now probably the most incendiary fault line in Africa, with big armies that fought each other for generations massing on either side.

After emergency talks to prevent a full-fledged conflict, the two sides agreed to a non-aggression pact late on Friday, yielding to intense pressure from the African Union, the United States and China — a major oil partner for both sides — to move beyond the language and tactics of mutual destruction. But few analysts see any easy solutions to the heated push and pull over oil.

Both sides desperately need the oil to run their governments, feed their people and stamp out spreading rebellions within their borders. And theoretically, both sides need each other. The conundrum of the two Sudans is that 75 percent of the oil lies in the south, but the pipeline to export it runs through the north. Because of this, oil was once thought to be the glue that would hold the two nations together and prevent a conflict. Now, it seems, oil is becoming the fuse.

When South Sudan broke off from Sudan last year, after years of guerrilla struggle, its independence was heralded as the triumphal capstone ending one of Africa’s deadliest civil wars. But the question of how exactly the two sides would share oil profits loomed ominously over the separation, unresolved. Now that both nations are struggling to make it on their own, the issue has proved to be as prickly — and perilous — as many feared.

It was South Sudanese oil that drove Sudan’s economic boom of the past decade and made the repression by Sudan’s Islamist government (which is still heavily penalized by the United States) tolerable to many Sudanese. When South Sudan declared independence, it took billions of dollars’ worth of oil with it, gutting Sudan’s economy and creating one of the deepest crises that President Omar Hassan al-Bashir has faced in his more than 20 years in power.

Mr. Bashir is now battling high inflation, a shrinking economy, student protests and several simultaneous rebellions — in Darfur, the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile State — as well as genocide charges related to the massacres several years ago in Darfur, and stiff American sanctions.

At the same time, South Sudan, one of the poorest countries on earth, is facing a major food crisis and heavily armed ethnically based militias that have been sweeping parts of the countryside, killing hundreds and making a mockery of the South Sudanese security forces.

Stoking the tensions, Sudan and South Sudan are covertly backing rebels in each other’s backyards, leading to border clashes and relentless aerial bombings. The more than 1,000-mile border between them is now effectively closed, with millions of pounds of emergency food and just about all trade held up in a two-way stranglehold.

Before the emergency accord on Friday, the situation was so precarious that many saw only violent outcomes. “I, personally, expect full-fledged war,” said Mariam al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, a leading opposition politician in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital. “This is like the previews before a film.”

In the fight over oil, the south has refused to turn over royalties for using Sudan’s pipelines. Sudan upped the ante in late December by seizing oil tankers filled with South Sudanese crude. Then, the south took the drastic step of abruptly shutting down all of its oil wells, which could quickly bring the economies of both north and south to their knees. South Sudanese officials have admitted that they are using their oil to squeeze Khartoum to make concessions on all sorts of issues, including the disputed area of Abyei, insisting that oil production, about 350,000 barrels a day, will resume only after “ all the deals are signed.”

The south has even threatened to sit on its oil for years while it builds an alternative pipeline through Kenya. But it is not clear how the new country would survive that long; oil provides about 98 percent of government revenue. Experts question whether the Kenya pipeline is even feasible. It would have to run uphill, requiring many expensive pumping stations, and most likely slice across Jonglei, a South Sudanese state that, with all its marauding militias, is essentially a war zone these days.

In Khartoum, many people are still struggling to swallow the fact that the south is gone. Nobody likes the new map of Sudan. It used to be Africa’s biggest country. Now it looks as if it has been crudely amputated, with the ragged edges of a raw wound.

“I still can’t get used to it,” said Nada Gerais, a sales manager in Khartoum. “It looks, looks …,” she struggled for the right word. “Weird.”

Mrs. Gerais is a perfect example of the nose dive Sudan’s economy has taken. She works in a meticulously polished Nissan dealership that used to sell 50 cars a month. Now, sometimes, it is down to five. She is thinking of switching to pharmaceuticals or food.

“People can stop buying cars, but they can’t stop eating,” she explained.

During the past decade, Sudan’s oil wealth fueled new factories, roads, countless shish kebab joints and plans for a futuristic minicity, a billion-dollar airport and the entire reconfiguring of this capital to include a breezy promenade along the Nile.

But so many of these plans have been shelved. High-rise buildings stand half-finished, and the plummeting value of the Sudanese pound has pushed electronics, books and even tomatoes out of reach for many.

Officials in Khartoum say the south owes them nearly $1 billion in pipeline fees, money needed to keep their economy from collapsing, and they recently sold some of the oil from the seized tankers before releasing them. South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, said the amount Khartoum wanted, $32 per barrel, was “exorbitant” and “completely out of international norms.”

Sabir M. Hassan, a Sudanese government negotiator, said that the north was willing to be flexible, but that the southerners were “too emotional” and still saw themselves as rebels.

“If you give them two choices, they’ll choose the one that hurts the north, not the one that helps the south,” Mr. Hassan said.

South Sudanese leaders say the same about Khartoum, which has blockaded roads leading south and recently held up humanitarian shipments, all to punish the south at the cost of millions of dollars in lost business.

Many political analysts wonder whether Mr. Bashir will be able to survive all these crises. But it is hard to see who would replace him.

Sudan’s political opposition is deeply divided and run by white-bearded septuagenarians. The rebel movements do not have much support in Khartoum. Sudanese students started an Arab Spring-like movement last year, but they failed to gain any traction. The security forces were quick to arrest protesters and string them up from ceiling fans.

And Sudan has a resilience that transcends the turmoil. Every Friday, in a dusty ring on Khartoum’s outskirts, hundreds of Nuban men gather to watch traditional wrestling. Ethnic Nubans are leading the rebellion against Khartoum in the Nuba Mountains. But there is little evidence of that here.

“Things are fine,” said one elderly spectator.

Just as he was about to elaborate, a young wrestler scooped up his opponent and body-slammed him in the dirt.

“You see that!” the old man hollered. “My God, I love this.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/11/world/africa/sudan-and-south-sudan-edge-closer-to-brink-in-oil-dispute.html?pagewanted=2&_r=1

INTERVIEW-Olympics-South Sudan race to compete at London Games
Reuters
Declared independent last July, South Sudan also wants to send a wheelchair basketball team, made up of amputees injured in the conflict in the country, to the Paralympics, Cirino Hiteng Ofuho told Reuters in an interview. “Right now we are discussing 

Russian, Chinese arms sales propel Sudanese conflict
Catholic Online
Ukraine has reported to the UN register that it exported 90 tanks to Sudan in 2010. Both Russia and the Ukraine have also supplied military equipment to South Sudan, he added. Amnesty International said an estimated 70000 people were displaced from 

Two Sudans Near Brink in Oil Dispute
New York Times
KHARTOUM, Sudan — Sudan and the breakaway nation of South Sudan are locked in an exceedingly dangerous game of brinkmanship over billions of gallons of oil, seizing tankers, shutting down wells and imperiling the tenuous, American-backed peace that 

( Ryan Boyette / Associated Press ) – In this photo taken Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012, school Pastor Zachariah Boulus stands next to a building in the compound of the Heiban Bible College, following a bombing on Wednesday, at the school which was built by Samaritan’s Purse, a North Carolina-based aid group, in Heiban, Southern Kordofan, Sudan. Sudan’s military bombed the Bible school built by a U.S. Christian aid group, prompting students and teachers at the school to run for their lives in the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan state and the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations condemned the attack.

By Associated Press, Updated: Saturday, February 4, 10:01 AM

KHARTOUM, Sudan — A Sudanese newspaper says a military spokesman has denied that the country’s air force has bombed civilians in a southern province.The independent Akher Lahza daily ran the report Saturday, one day after teachers said that a Bible school had been attacked.
The paper quoted Col. Sawarmi Khalid Saad as saying that reports of civilians being targeted were “Western plots” to damage Sudan’s image.Pictures obtained by The Associated Press on Friday showed two demolished buildings in the Nuba mountains in South Kordofan state. No one was reported to have been hurt or killed in the Wednesday attack.U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice said she was outraged by the “heinous” bombing.The school was built by Samaritan’s Purse, a North Carolina-based aid group.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle-east/sudan-denies-targeting-civilians-in-southern-province-after-us-built-school-reported-bombed/2012/02/04/gIQArTQPpQ_story.html

Sudan: Statement by the Press Secretary on Aerial Bombardments in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States

2 FEBRUARY 2012

PRESS RELEASE

Washington, DC — The United States strongly condemns the bombing by the Sudanese Armed Forces of civilian populations in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States in Sudan. Aerial attacks on civilian targets are unjustified and unacceptable. Such attacks are a violation of international law and compound the ongoing crisis in these areas.

We continue to be deeply concerned by the ongoing fighting and lack of humanitarian access in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States in Sudan, which is causing tremendous human suffering, death, and displacement.

In particular, we urge the Sudanese government to grant immediate and unconditional humanitarian access to civilian populations in need in these areas. More than 500,000 people are affected by this conflict, and without humanitarian access by March, the situation in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile will reach Stage 4 of a humanitarian emergency, one step short of full-scale famine. We believe that this conflict can only be resolved by dialogue, not through violence, and we encourage all parties to negotiate a peaceful settlement.

Washington Post – ‎
KHARTOUM, Sudan — A Sudanese newspaper says a military spokesman has denied that the country’s air force has bombed civilians in a southern province. The independent Akher Lahza daily ran the report Saturday, one day after teachers said that a Bible 
New York Times –
Sudan’s military bombed a Bible school built by an American Christian group in the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan State. Two stone school buildings were demolished in the attack on the school, Heiban Bible College, which was built by Samaritan’s 
Voice of America – ‎‎
February 03, 2012 Aid Groups Ask US to Consider Cross-Border Aid Effort in Sudan James Butty A coalition of human rights groups Thursday has appealed to the Obama administration to lead a cross-border aid operation into South Sudan to deliver 
NPR – ‎‎
by AP NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Sudan’s military bombed a Bible school built by a US Christian aid group, prompting students and teachers at the school to run for their lives in the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan state. The US ambassador to the United 
News24 – ‎Feb 3, 2012‎
Nairobi – Officials say that Sudan’s military has bombed a Bible school built by a US Christian aid group, prompting students and teachers at the school to run for their lives in the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan state.
Huffington Post – ‎Feb 3, 2012‎
JASON STRAZIUSO 02/ 3/12 12:43 PM ET AP NAIROBI, Kenya — Sudan’s military bombed a Bible school built by a US Christian aid group, prompting students and teachers at the school to run for their lives in the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan state.
Reuters Africa – ‎Feb 2, 2012‎
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States accused Sudan’s government on Thursday of carrying out air strikes on civilians in the restive border states of Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile and said the attacks were compounding a crisis in the two areas.
Christian Broadcasting Network –
A Christian school built by Franklin Graham’s charity Samaritan’s Purse was bombed in Sudan, Friday. Eight bombs were dropped on the Heiban Bible College in South Kordofan state near the border with South Sudan. Two school buildings were destroyed in 
StarAfrica.com – ‎Feb 3, 2012‎
WASHINGTON, February 3, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The United States strongly condemns the bombing by the Sudanese Armed Forces of civilian populations in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States in Sudan. Aerial attacks on civilian 
Zawya (registration) – ‎Feb 2, 2012‎
WASHINGTON, Feb 03, 2012 (AFP) – The White House on Thursday condemned the “unjustified and unacceptable” bombing of civilians by the Sudanese military in the states of Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile. President Barack Obama’s spokesman Jay Carney 

By Abdelmoneim Edris Ali (AFP) –

KHARTOUM, SUDAN — Sudan is closer to war than peace with the breakaway state of South Sudan, President Omar al-Bashir said on national television on Friday.

“The climate now is closer to a climate of war than one of peace,” Bashir said.

He spoke after South Sudanese President Salva Kiir warned on Thursday that renewed conflict could erupt if bitter oil negotiations with Khartoum do not include a deal on other key issues, including the contested Abyei region.

Tensions have also been raised by the still undemarcated border, parts of which cut through oilfields, as well as mutual allegations that each side backs rebel forces against the other.

But Bashir said Sudan will not go to war “unless it is imposed on us.”

South Sudan separated last July after an overwhelming vote that followed two decades of civil war which killed two million.

The crisis between the neighbours has become a major threat to regional peace and security, United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon has said.

Juba announced last Sunday it had nearly completed a protest shutdown of its oil production after talks in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa failed again to resolve a disagreement with Sudan over oil fees.

Khartoum admits to confiscating 1.7 million barrels of South Sudanese crude since vowing in November to take 23 percent of southern oil exports as payment in kind during the fee dispute.

The South calls this “theft.”

“We will continue taking our rights in kind until we reach agreement,” Bashir said.

When South Sudan separated, it took with it three-quarters of the country’s total oil production of 470,000 barrels per day.

But landlocked and grossly underdeveloped South Sudan can only ship its oil through the north, leaving the two countries disputing how much Juba should pay for pumping its crude through the pipeline and Red Sea marine terminal.

The South depends on oil for more than 90 percent of its revenues, while Khartoum’s finance minister said late last year that the loss of oil from the South left a budget shortfall of 30 percent.

Since then, Sudan has witnessed spiralling inflation — which the government sees reaching 17 percent this year — and the sharp devaluation of the Sudanese pound.

At the same time, crippling debts of almost $40 billion and US economic sanctions, which have banned virtually all trade with Sudan since 1997, choke its access to external financing.

In South Kordofan and Blue Nile States, along the contested border with South Sudan, the regime has for several months been fighting ethnic minority insurgents who fought alongside the former rebels now ruling in Juba.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gB07KOmhTLn6VH23Q2zfJHRKsnlQ?docId=CNG.509c6be00a165aa5f8d8dd1384c905e8.361

Sudan’s Bashir says tensions with South could spark war

Fri Feb 3, 2012 7:13pm GMT

 

KHARTOUM Feb 3 (Reuters) – Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir said on Friday tensions with South Sudan over oil transit payments could lead to war, stepping up the rhetoric in a row over crude reserves between the two countries.

Asked in an interview with state television whether war could break out with South Sudan, Bashir said: “There is a possibility.”

He said Sudan wanted peace but added: “We will go to war if we are forced to go to war.”

“If there will be war after the loss of oil it will be a war of attrition. But it will be a war of attrition hitting them before us,” he said.

Sudan is locked in a row with South Sudan over sharing oil revenues. South Sudan, home to substantial crude reserves, split away as an independent country in July, under a 2005 peace agreement.

The landlocked South still needs to export its crude through the north’s port and pipelines. But the two countries went their separate ways without agreeing how much South Sudan was going to pay Sudan to use its oil infrastructure.

The crisis came to a head when Khartoum said in January it had seized some southern oil as compensation for what it called unpaid fees, and South Sudan responded by shutting down oil production.

Bashir on Friday accused Juba of shutting down the oil flow to provoke a collapse of the Sudanese government. Khartoum has been fighting a severe economic crisis since the loss of southern oil, sparking small protests against high food inflation.

Bashir also said his southern counterpart Salva Kirr had refused to reach a deal about oil payments at a meeting last week on the sidelines of the African Union in Addis Ababa.

“They (the South) didn’t sign and they will not sign,” Bashir said, adding that Khartoum was entitled to 74,000 barrels of day of southern oil. Juba pumped 350,000 bpd prior to the shutdown.

“This is our right,” he said.

Bashir said the economic situation was difficult for Sudan this year but the country would boost current oil production of 115,000 bpd by 75,000 bpd. Sudan’s current output serves only domestic consumption.

Sudan would also export gold worth $2.5 billion this year and expand the agricultural sector to compensate for the loss of oil, he said.

Experts have expressed doubts rising gold exports and other measures to diversify the economy will offset the loss of oil revenues of $5 billion booked in 2010.

They say economic diversification has been hampered for years by corruption, misplanning and a U.S. trade embargo. (Reporting by Ulf Laessing and Khalid Abdelaziz)

http://af.reuters.com/article/commoditiesNews/idAFL5E8D33ZT20120203?sp=true


Kiir explains South Sudan’s refusal to sign oil deal with Khartoum

Sudan Tribune
February 1, 2012 (JUBA)- South Sudan president, Salva Kiir Mayradit, on Tuesday told fellow heads of state at the (AU) summit that his country refused to sign a proposed deal on oil with neighboring Sudan because the deal failed to comprehensively 

Bombs hit evangelical Bible school in Sudan, group says
CNN
By the CNN Wire Staff (CNN) — A Christian evangelical group said Thursday that a Bible school — backed by American evangelist Franklin Graham — was destroyed in the latest bombing raid to hitSouth Kordofan, an oil-rich Sudanese province that 

From Seattle area to Sudan: Doc tends to flood of refugees
The Seattle Times
A Seattle-area doctor who traveled to South Sudan in November on a relief mission found himself the only physician for some 5000 refugees. By Lark Turner Women and their children wait in mid-November for an opportunity to be examined by Dr. Alan Kelley 

UN official warns that crises in new nation of South Sudan will need more than 
Washington Post
JUBA, South Sudan — A top UN official says South Sudan may need more than the $760 million the agency predicted they would need to cope with the new country’s myriad humanitarian crises. UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Valerie Amos 

CNN
 said Thursday that a Bible school — backed by American evangelist Franklin Graham — was destroyed in the latest bombing raid to hit South Kordofan, an oil-rich Sudanese province that borders the newly created independent country of South Sudan.


China’s Diplomacy Tested in Sudan Kidnap Drama

Wall Street Journal
The Chinese government has approached newly created South Sudan to help negotiate the release of Chinese captives held by rebels in neighboring Sudan, said a South Sudan official, an unusual diplomatic move that risks complicating China’s ties with two 
South Sudan: UN relief chief sees ‘terrible situation’ in troubled Jonglei state
UN News Centre
WFP truck approaches Boma in South Sudan’s Jonglei state, where ethnic violence has displaced thousands of people. Photo: WFP/Rehan Zahid The United Nations relief chief today visited areas in South Sudan hit by recent ethnic violence and met some of 

Khartoum, Sudan – The African Union (AU) on Monday urged Sudan and South Sudan to end what it calls their current unilateral action, saying it threatens to bring the two countries to confrontation.

In a statement issued in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, African Union Commission Chairperson Jean Ping said he is ‘gravely concerned’ by developments in both countries.

He said the unilateral steps taken by the two governments had brought their relationship to a point of breakdown, ‘with the immediate danger of destroying the possibility of achieving the agreed goal of two viable states, friendly and mutually supportive”.

Representatives of the two countries are currently in Addis for talks to resolve outstanding issues after the implementation of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA),

Mr. Ping warned that the spirit that led to a peaceful referendum one year ago and the amicable separation of South Sudan was “fast vanishing. “

He noted that against the backdrop of the absence of an agreement between the two states, the Government of Sudan recently began diverting oil originating from South Sudan for domestic refining and for international sale.

In the last few days, the Government of the Republic of South Sudan has initiated the shutdown of all oil production, in an accelerated manner that risks serious damage to the oil pipeline to the north.

He explained that those ‘reciprocal unilateral measures threaten grave damage to the economic prospects of both countries and relations between them.”

The statement said the actions had also taken place at a time when the AU High‐Level Implementation Panel  (AUHIP) on Sudan is convening negotiations on the question of oil and transitional financial arrangements.

It noted that the Panel presented a draft proposal to the two parties two days ago, and is revising and finalizing this proposal in line with the detailed responses provided by the two negotiating teams.

“The AU is confident that the differences between the parties can be bridged. Neighboring African states and the international community, including the United Nations, the United States and China, have expressed support for the AUHIP proposal. These negotiations are continuing in Addis Ababa.” the statement said.

In view of the urgency of the issues involved, the AU Commission chief revealed that the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), under the chairmanship of Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, is convening an Extraordinary Summit to support the work of the AUHIP

Pana 23/01/2012

http://www.afriquejet.com/sudan-south-sudan-au-urges-to-stop-unilateral-actions-2012012332003.html


Christians Sudan, South Sudan Facing Death And Detention
BosNewsLife
KHARTOUM, SUDAN (BosNewsLife)– Christians in Sudan and newly created South Sudan face possible detention, beatings and even death amid a “deteriorating humanitarian situation” with thousands of people being killed this year alone, aid workers and 

South Sudan to unveil pipeline plans next week: minister
Reuters UK
By Hereward Holland and Lucy Hornby | JUBA/BEIJING (Reuters) – South Sudan will announce plans for an oil export pipeline through East Africa next week, a priority for the new nation because its crude is “no longer safe” in Sudan, a government 

South Sudan officials absent from talks on borders, AUHIP announces adjournment
Sudan Tribune
January 21, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The African Union High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) today announced that the governments of Sudan and South Sudan have requested that the meetings of the joint political and security mechanisms be postponed till next 

South Sudan will resume exporting through north only if “fair deal” reached
Sudan Tribune
By Ngor Arol Garang January 21, 2012 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Saturday said it will resume exporting its crude oil to international markets through north Sudan if the government in Khartoum agrees to a “fair” transit fee and returns confiscated oil. 

China Urges Sudan, South Sudan To Resolve Oil Dispute With Talks, Respect CNPC 
Fox Business
BEIJING – China on Saturday urged the governments of Sudan and South Sudan to remain calm and restrained and resolve their differences over oil exports through “negotiation at an early date”. “Oil is the economic lifeline shared by Sudan and South 

South Sudan Plans to Shut Down Oil Output Over Sudan Fees
BusinessWeek
By Jared Ferrie (Updates with comments from South Sudan’s oil minister starting in first paragraph, Sudan government in last.) Jan. 20 (Bloomberg) — South Sudan plans to stop oil production after Sudan started seizing southern crude and demanded $32 

South Sudan Plans to Shut Down Crude Output Over Oil Dispute With Sudan
Bloomberg
South Sudan plans to stop oil production after Sudan started seizing southern crude and demanded $32 per barrel in transport fees on shipments through its territory, Oil Minister Stephen Dhieu Dau said. South Sudan told oil companies yesterday to 

South Sudan Threatens Oil Production Shutdown
Voice of America
January 20, 2012 South Sudan Threatens Oil Production Shutdown VOA News South Sudan says it may shut down oil production because neighboring Sudan is seizing southern oil flowing through its pipelines. South Sudan government spokesman Barnaba Marial 
In Sudan, the AU has a chance to prove its grand rhetoric
Times LIVE
It is common cause that Sudan has been mired in conflict for ever and three days. The country took a major step towards the resolution of decades-long civil war when South Sudan was allowed to secede and form a new country. But conflict has continued 
Kenya urged to mediate Sudan oil row
Daily Nation
A soldier stands next to the infrastructure of a field processing facility in Unity State,South Sudan. Photo/AFP By LUCAS BARASA lbarassa@ke.nationmedia.com Kenya has been urged to intervene and help resolve a row over oil pipeline pitting the two 

Daily Nation
South Sudan orders oil-production halt
Aljazeera.com
South Sudan has said it ordered the halt of oil production that provides some 98 percent of its revenue, amid a deepening dispute with the Sudanese government over pipeline fees. Sudan admits to taking some South Sudanese oil destined for export as

Aljazeera.com
Sudan: Rights Record Deteriorates With New Conflicts
Human Rights Watch
Despite the peaceful secession of South Sudan on July 9, 2011, new conflicts broke out in the disputed territory of Abyei in May, in Southern Kordofan state in June, and Blue Nile state in September. The two states lie north of the South Sudan border 

PRESS RELEASE ON ALLEGATIONS MADE BY SUDAN THAT SOUTH SUDAN PROMISED TO EXPEL DARFUR REBEL GROUP (JEM) FROM ITS TERRITORY
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Republic of South Sudan (RSS) is deeply concerned about an incorrect news story published online on(January 15, 2012) by Sudan Tribune alleging  that the RSS South Sudan  promised to expel members of Darfur rebel group Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) from its territory.
The Government of the Republic of South Sudan categorically refutes the allegations made by Sudan’s State Minister of Foreign Affairs in which he attributed a statement to have been made by Deputy Minister of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation (RSS) Prof. Elias Nyamlell Wakoson.
On many occasions, the RSS has made it clear to the world media that there is no presence of any rebel group from Darfur or any other Northern rebel groups fighting against the Government of Khartoum on South Sudan’s soil, and having said that ,the  statement is blatantly false and should be retracted.
Nevertheless we would like to make the following clarifications:
A delegation from South Sudan led by South Sudan’s Deputy Minister of International Cooperation Prof. Elias Nyamlell Wokoson was in Khartoum for a five days visit. During this visit, the delegation held meetings with Senior Government Officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other Government institutions of the Government of Sudan, in which various areas of crucial concern were discussed.
The governments of South Sudan delegation never in any way expressed or implied knowledge or support of JEM rebels leave alone the expulsion of these rebels from its territory. As such, the government of South Sudan is appalled by these statements and considers these allegations as baseless and in bad spirit of the bilateral talks.
We would like to point out that, the internal rebellions in Sudan is purely an internal and domestic matter, and the government of South Sudan has never had a hand or interest in supporting it.
The sovereign Republic of South Sudan adheres firmly to the principle of non- interference in domestic affairs of other countries.
Finally, the RSS Government further urges the editors of the article to seek accurate and cohesive first hand information from the source.
For more details: you can contact the department of information in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on
Tel: 0910573484

Sudan: priests kidnapped, tensions grow
Catholic Culture
According to the Fides news service, the kidnappers charged that the parish was harboring a former member of the Sudanese People’s Liberation Army, the group that fought successfully for the independence of South Sudan. Christians in Sudan report that 

S. Sudan denies promising to expel Darfur rebels
Sudan Tribune
January 18, 2012 (JUBA)- South Sudan on Wednesday dismissed reports claiming it pledged to expel the Darfurian rebel group Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), fighting the Khartoum-based government, from its territory. The release extended to Sudan 

Sudan dismisses South Sudan’s accusations
China Daily
KHARTOUM – Sudanese government on Wednesday dismissed South Sudan’s accusations that the north has been stealing oil from the south as “political talk” which does not help resolve their disagreements. “The south’s accusations of the north stealing oil 

Khartoum says oil deal with South Sudan depends on border security
Sudan Tribune
January 18, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s Foreign Minister Ali Karti on Wednesday said that an oil deal with South Sudan is unlikely to be reached in light of the latter’s support to insurgents in border areas. Sudan and South Sudan failed to resume their 

Gettleman Discusses Violence In South Sudan
NPR
Audie Cornish speaks with Jeffrey Gettleman, East Africa bureau chief for the New York Times, about escalating violence in South Sudan. Back in July of last year, news from the brand new country ofSouth Sudan was optimistic. 

South Sudan: Murle Attackers Kill 51 in Duk County, Jonglei State
AllAfrica.com
Juba — In an evening attack launched by armed Murle tribesmen last Monday left 51 dead while one seriously wounded person died in the plane on the way to hospital in Juba bringing the number of the dead to 52 and 47 wounded and 32 of them have been 

UN Says South Sudan Peacekeeping Mission Denied Resources
Voice of America (blog)
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon says critical resources were withheld from the South Sudan peacekeeping mission, hindering its ability to protect civilians during recent violence there. In a speech Wednesday at an international institute 

Dozens killed in South Sudan tribal violence
Al Jazeera
The long running conflict between rival tribes in South Sudan is escalating. A youth armed group from the Murle tribe attacked the Lou Nuer tribe in Duk Padyet in Jonglei state late on Monday. Forty-seven people have been killed, most of which were 

Child Kidnap South Sudan
Reuters AlertNet
CHILD abduction is escalating in South Sudan’s war-torn border region – according to charity Plan International. The organisation is warning that young people are being snatched as part of ethnic clashes in Jonglei state that have displaced tens of 


One of the refugees’ chiefs greeting the UNHCR boss while presenting their needs to him [©Gurtong]One of the refugees’ chiefs greeting the UNHCR boss while presenting their needs to him [©Gurtong]The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Mr. Antonio Guterres has described the situation at Doro Camp in Maban County, Upper Nile State after visiting the Blue Nile refugee’s camp as a massive humanitarian disaster which deserve support from the international community.

“I want to make a very strong appeal to the international community for massive humanitarian solidarity for the people of South Sudan at the moment. South Sudan is a new born State still facing enormous challenge from humanitarian perspective. There are more than 80,000 refugees coming from Blue Nile State,” Antonia said when he visited the camp early last week.

“Without this support it will be impossible to respond, that is why we are conveying this key message today that we are facing a humanitarian disaster of a large population proportion in the country,” he added.

The Governor of Upper Nile State, Simon Kun Puoc said the government is ready to support the refugees.

“We will make sure there is enough security in the camp to allow humanitarian assistance to the refugees.” Governor Kun promised.

The Minister of South Sudan Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, Hon. Joseph Lual Acuil appealed to the donors  to support the people of South Sudan in handling the refugees situations in Maban.

“Your (international community) kind hearts and gesture will be highly appreciated by the people you will support. The more time we waste, the harder it becomes for us to help these people because when rains start it will be very difficult to respond,” the Minister stressed.

There are 60 planes loaded with food and other assorted items coming to Malakal to bring support to the refugees. The items will be supplied by trucks to Maban for the refugees.

The refugees were represented by their chiefs who articulated their needs to the high delegation and to the Governor, Minister of South Sudan Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, South Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Commission and the Commissioner of Maban.

Chief Abdula Malik Rusah who explained the refugees’ situation said that, we lack enough food; we are thirsty because there are no boreholes. We appeal to the authorities to provide medical care and education for our children. We have teachers and medical staff who came with us from Kurmuk, I’m appealing to the authorities to integrate them into the system to teach our children and treat us.” Chief Abdula requested.

“We appeal to the international community to support us with food, let them not stop. I urge the authorities and the agencies to increase the registration tables because we are very many,” the Chief added.

The UNHCR Commissioner apologized to the Chiefs and community members due to the fact that in the beginning, the assistance was very little, but now the State authorities, UNHCR and other agencies were working to have regular food supply.

He announced that they will drill 20 boreholes, the Medicine San Frontiers (MSF) – an independent organisation for medical humanitarian aid is present on the ground for health issues. The teachers and nurses who are refugee shall start work immediately as Mr. Guterres directed the UNHCR head of operation in Maban.

http://www.oyetimes.com/news/105-africa/17100-unhcr-declares-massive-humanitarian-disaster-in-south-sudan

UNHCR Press Statement: South-bound but stranded in Sudan

16 January 2012

© UNHCR/V.Tan
After waiting for over a year to go to South Sudan, some southerners have set up home in abandoned train carriages at Khartoum’s Shajara railway station.
KHARTOUM, Sudan, January 16 (UNHCR) – At first glance it looks like a junkyard, strewn with piles of broken furniture, rusty metal beams and doors ripped off their hinges. Closer inspection reveals giant padlocked boxes, makeshift shelters and people hidden underneath the constant coat of dust that blows through the Sudanese capital.

This is the Shajara railway station in southern Khartoum. It is also one of 14 active “departure points” around the capital, and home to tonnes of luggage and hundreds of desperate people who have been waiting for up to a year to go back to their villages in South Sudan. The last train to leave here was in late October. Six more trains are scheduled in the coming months, and everyone is scrambling to get on the passenger list.

“We have been here for nine months now, we really want to go,” said a woman who has made a home for herself in an abandoned train carriage. “My baby was born here three months ago. We call him Railway.”

Blinking the dust from his eyes, Baby Railway has no idea what the fuss is about. His family was among the southerners who fled during more than 20 years of civil war between the north and south.

In the months leading up to South Sudan’s independence last July, many of those who had sought refuge in Sudan over the years started to move to their ancestral villages, as well as people born and bred in Sudan but with strong ties to the south. After an enthusiastic start – more than 350,000 people headed south between October 2010 and December 2011 – the movement has stalled.

Part of the problem is financial: The South Sudanese government ran out of funds to organize movements, while many southerners in Sudan have lost their jobs since secession and are facing economic woes.

Then there are the logistical problems that caused the pile-up at Shajara station. Decades of neglect have left the rail service between Khartoum and Wau in the north-western part of South Sudan in shambles. A single train plies the more 1,000-kilometre-long single track between the two cities.

Breakdowns and derailments are common, such that the one-way journey takes at least two weeks, often longer. Come the rainy season from June to December, parts of the track will become impassable with overgrown grass.

Separately, some 9,000 southerners heading to the central and southern parts of South Sudan are stranded at the Kosti way station due to a shortage of barges to take them and their massive amounts of luggage down the River Nile.

Even for those people who can afford to move themselves on buses or trucks, the lack of security en route is a major obstacle. Fighting in border areas, especially in South Kordofan state, means that convoys are often robbed or attacked.

“We ask that UNHCR facilitates the transportation and ensures safety along the way,” said Deng Bot, a representative of some 40,000 southerners living in Khartoum’s Mayo Mandella settlement during a visit by UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres last week.

“We need to find a new way,” said Guterres, acknowledging the many obstacles to people going south. “We need for the two governments to agree on a plan to move the most vulnerable people by plane, but with road travel as the main route. This is only possible with proper coordination and adequate security conditions.”

In the meantime, 245 desperate families continue to wait in this departure point, an open space in Mayo Mandella with patchwork shelters made of plastic sheets, gunny sacks and bits of cloth. There is little shade from the harsh sun and dusty winds. Water is bought from donkey carts, and there are no latrines, and few health facilities or schools.

Asunta Matia gave up her rented home a year ago when she lost her income as a tea lady. “We were told we’ll leave tomorrow, then tomorrow and tomorrow again. But it hasn’t happened yet,” she said. “When I go back to Wau, I can set up my tea shop again. I want to see my children go to university.”

Her daughter Madalena, 26 and a mother of two, has applied to the University of Juba and hopes to study engineering. Her husband and brother have both moved to Wau in South Sudan, but make just enough to send money for food. Neither Asunta nor Madalena know how they will raise the money to go home, or when they will leave.

But Asunta is sure about one thing: “It’s not working here. It’s better that we leave and find something better in South Sudan.”

There are an estimated 700,000 southerners living in Sudan. So far, some 110,000 in Khartoum have been registered to move in an exercise to determine the numbers and destinations, and to identify vulnerable people who may need special assistance.

The UN refugee agency and the International Organization for Migration co-chair the Returns sector, focusing on the registration of people who wish to go to South Sudan, in coordination with the Khartoum-based Commission of Voluntary and Humanitarian Work. The two agencies also provide life-saving assistance and protection monitoring at way stations, departure points and along the road.

As the April deadline approaches for southerners to acquire Sudanese residency permits, the Returns sector has also been encouraging the governments of Sudan and South Sudan to issue nationality and residency documentation for South Sudanese remaining in Sudan, and to implement fair procedures to determine nationality with safeguards to prevent statelessness.

By Vivian Tan, In Khartoum, Sudan

http://www.unhcr.org/4f143a799.html


JUBA, South Sudan — South Sudan said Tuesday that Sudan, its northern neighbor that controls the region’s pipelines, has blocked the movement of 3.4 million barrels of oil belonging to the south since December.

After breaking away from Sudan in July to become the world’s newest country, South Sudan gained control of nearly three quarters of the formerly unified country’s oil fields, which produce around 500,000 barrels per day.

The loss of the oil has cost Khartoum around half of its yearly revenue, and the two countries are currently negotiating revenue sharing and pipeline fees to help the north meet that budget shortfall.

But the South Sudan’s Minister of Petroleum and Mining Stephen Dhieu Dau told a news conference on Tuesday that the north has prevented 3.4 million barrels from reaching the market, and said Sudan ordered 550,000 barrels belonging to the south to be delivered to one of Khartoum’s buyers.

“They want to steal, to loot the resources of South Sudan,” Dau said.

Dau said that one ship carrying 1 million barrels of southern oil was blocked from leaving Port Sudan on Dec. 31, while a second carrying 600,000 barrels was stopped Jan. 3. A third ship entered port on Jan. 6 but has not been allowed to collect its 600,000-barrel cargo. The minister said two more ships scheduled to receive a total of 1.2 million barrels of southern oil have not been allowed to enter the northern port.

“They are still waiting now in international waters on the Red Sea since the 22nd of December,” said Dau.

South Sudan has called the blockade a theft of their natural resources in violation of international law.

Two spokesmen for Sudan’s government did not answer calls seeking comment.

Officials in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital, have proposed a fee of about $36 per barrel for the use of the two pipelines. But the south says the fee amounts to extortion and has instead offered an average of 70 cents per barrel in addition to an aid package totaling $2.6 billion over four years.

The oil agreement still being negotiated is part of a host of outstanding issues from the region’s 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which ended more than 20 years of civil war between the two sides. After talks in Ethiopia broke down in November, the Sudan’s government threatened to take 23 percent of southern oil shipped through its port as an “in kind” payment of fees.

On Tuesday, Dau said Khartoum was in the “final stages” of constructing a pipeline that would permanently divert 13 percent of all oil shipped through the north. According to Dau the consortium which operates the pipeline, Petrodar, has denounced the action as illegal.

In December, South Sudan accused the north of holding 1.6 million barrels of oil meant in part for China, prompting a visit by a Chinese envoy to help break the deadlocked negotiations.

Another round of oil negotiations are expected to begin Jan. 17. South Sudan has invited China to take part in the talks. South Sudan says it will not allow its resources to be interfered with by Khartoum and has threatened legal action if the blockade continues.

Iraq tried to invade Kuwait because they wanted to take the oil of Kuwait,” said South Sudan government spokesman Barnaba Benjamin Marial. “You know what happened to Saddam Hussein.”

South Sudan facing multiple crises
News24
Now R153.95 Juba – South Sudan faces challenges of “huge dimensions” as the world’s newest nation struggles to support hundreds of thousands of people returning home or fleeing violence, the UN refugee chief said on Tuesday. “South Sudan is a newborn

Kenyans trafficked to South Sudan for sex work -report
TrustLaw
REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya By Katy Migiro NAIROBI (TrustLaw) – Kenyan women are being trafficked to new country South Sudan as sex workers, according to a report in Tuesday’s The Star newspaper. There has been an influx of foreign sex workers from Kenya,

South Sudan Accuses Sudan of Blocking Oil Exports
Fox News
AP JUBA, South SudanSouth Sudan said Tuesday that Sudan, its northern neighbor that controls the region’s pipelines, has blocked the movement of 3.4 million barrels of oil belonging to the south since December. After breaking away from Sudan in


KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudanese security forces have confiscated the entire edition of an independent newspaper in the capital Khartoum, its editor said on Sunday, the latest sign of a media crackdown.

Sudan’s constitution guarantees press freedom but journalists often complain of pressure or censorship. Last month, two female journalists were jailed for writing about an alleged rape case.

“Security forces have confiscated all copies on Saturday after we printed them,” said Adil al-Baz, editor and owner of al-Ahdath newspaper, adding the newspaper had not been given a reason for the confiscation.

The newspaper had planned to run an interview with a senior official of the northern branch of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), the ruling party in newly-independent South Sudan. It has also reported about corruption and terrorism issues.

Sudan’s security forces were not immediately available to comment on the confiscation, a move which would inflict substantial financial damage on the publication.

One day before the independence of South Sudan in July, Khartoum also suspended six newspapers because southerners were among their publishers or owners.

The jailing of the two female journalists for writing about the alleged rape of an activist by security forces has sparked condemnation by the U.N. Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Margot Wallstroem.

“I am very concerned about these judgments … Regardless of the facts of the case, Sudanese journalists have a right to report on rape and other forms of sexual violence,” Wallstroem said in a statement on August 3.

Sudan security seize newspaper

(AFP) – 7 hours ago 

KHARTOUM, Sudan — Sudanese security forces on Sunday seized all the copies of Al-Ahdath newspaper from the printers, its editor in chief said, in the latest sign of a clampdown on independent media in Khartoum.

“The security forces came to the printers and they took all the copies of the newspaper, without giving an explanation,” Adil al-Baz told AFP.

The newspaper was running a series of articles this month, called “The days of Carlos in Khartoum,” about the notorious international terrorist “Carlos the Jackal”.

Carlos — a Venezuelan whose real name is Ilich Ramirez Sanchez — was seized in Sudan in murky circumstances in 1994.

It is not the first time the paper has been barred from distribution.

But Sudan has experienced a tightening of press freedom in the wake of South Sudan’s secession last month.

Several newspapers with links to the south were closed, including the popular Arabic daily Ajras al-Hurriya, and numerous journalists are on trial for reporting the alleged rape of a female opposition activist by security forces.

Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders has accused the Sudanese authorities of harassing and prosecuting journalists in a bid to stop them making embarrassing revelations about human rights violations.

Related articles


Sudan halts South Sudan oil shipment

Sudan has blocked a shipment of southern oil after Juba refused to pay customs fees, the foreign ministry said, escalating a row in which the south accuses Khartoum of sabotaging its economy.

South Sudan's chief negotiator, Pagan Amum

South Sudan’s chief negotiator, Pagan Amum, has warned Khartoum against starting ‘economic wars’ over currency and oil transit fees Photo: AFP/GETTY

Sudan has blocked the ship in Port Sudan … When the ship leaves the port, the south has to pay the customs authorities. This is the first time they didn’t pay,” foreign ministry spokesman Al-Obeid Meruh said.

Earlier, he had said the 600,000 barrel crude cargo had been blocked because the Juba government refused to pay the north’s fees for the use of all its oil infrastructure, including its pipeline, refinery and Red Sea port, which is the south’s only export terminal.

Mr Meruh confirmed no agreement had yet been reached between north and south on transit fees, one of the most sensitive of Sudan’s various unresolved issues, following the formal independence of the south on July 9.

He said Khartoum was asking for $32 dollars per barrel.

The ministry of energy and mines in South Sudan, from which 80 per cent of the divided country’s total oil production of 470,000 barrels per day is pumped, accused Khartoum of delaying the negotiations to squeeze the south.

“They want to stop the shipment so that it prolongs the whole process. Khartoum is trying to sabotage the economy of South Sudan,” the ministry’s undersecretary, David Loro, said.

He said a committee of southern officials was currently in Khartoum working to reach an agreement with the Sudanese government on the question of transit fees.

South Sudan sold its July-lifting oil independently, for the first time, at international prices and apparently without interference from Khartoum, shipping around 3.2 million barrels from Port Sudan.

Since then, however, South Sudan’s chief negotiator, Pagan Amum, has warned Khartoum against starting “economic wars” over currency and oil transit fees, and has said the charges that it had imposed amounted to “daylight robbery.”

He said Sudan should set its transit fees according to “international standards,” and cited the figure of $1.8 a barrel charged by other states with similar arrangements, reflecting how far apart the two sides are on the issue.

North and South Sudan both depend heavily on their oil receipts, with Khartoum’s cash-strapped government desperate to offset its loss of southern oil revenues, which represented some 36 per cent of its income prior to partition.

Just weeks before the south seceded, Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir threatened to deny the landlocked south access to the north’s oil infrastructure if no deal was reached.

The World Bank, meanwhile, warned last month that the Juba government urgently needed to develop the new nation’s agricultural sector to lessen its reliance on oil, which accounts for more than 95 per cent of its total revenues.

Sudan halts southern oil shipment

By Ulf Laessing and Hereward Holland

KHARTOUM/JUBA | Fri Aug 5, 2011 4:11pm EDT

(Reuters) – North Sudan has halted an oil shipment from landlocked South Sudan in a dispute over customs fees, it said on Friday, signaling a rise in tensions that could disrupt supplies from one of Africa’s largest producers.

For use of its oil facilities, North Sudan has demanded fees worth a third of the export value of South Sudan, which became independent last month, after a referendum in January agreed under a 2005 peace deal that ended decades of civil war.

The halting of a 600,000 barrels crude cargo in Port Sudan signals mounting tensions over how to share oil revenues.

The South took 75 percent of the country’s 500,000 barrels a day of oil production, Africa’s fifth largest. But it depends on the North to use the only cross-border pipeline to the Red Sea outlet of Port Sudan to sell the oil.

On Friday, customs authorities in Port Sudan stopped one shipment because duties had not been paid, a spokesman for the foreign ministry in Khartoum said without giving other details.

“Customs asked for the fees to be paid. They paid last time but not this time,” the spokesman said.

He said the action had been the decision of the customs authorities and was not related to current talks between North and South about sharing oil revenues.

The two sides have failed so far to reach an agreement on a transit fee to be paid by the South. Until now both split equally the oil, the lifeline of both economies.

Khartoum is asking for $32 a barrel to use its port, the pipeline and refineries to sell the southern oil, the spokesman said. This is worth roughly a third of South Sudan’s export value at current prices. according to Reuters calculations.

“This has to be negotiated. There is no agreement yet,” he said, adding that other proposals such as a fixed sum instead of a transit fee were being discussed.

A South Sudan official sought to ease the oil tensions.

“We don’t interpret this as a rejection by Khartoum. I do not think this is politically motivated,” said David Loro Gubek, undersecretary at the ministry of energy and mining in Juba.

“There are certain procedures at the port that have to be followed. We will wait for clarification tomorrow.”

Tensions had seemed to have eased at the end of last month when South Sudan said it saw progress in oil sharing talks with the North only a week after accusing it of waging economic war by demanding a very high pipeline transit fee.

Last month, the northern parliament approved an alternative 2011 budget that lawmakers said included an annual income of $2.6 billion for transit fees — the same amount expected for the loss of southern oil production.

Refineries are located only in the North. Experts say southern plans to connect to a pipeline in east African neighbor Kenya are years away.

Analysts say Sudan has had little transparency for years about how oil revenues are booked. The country has endured conflict, inflation, corruption and U.S. trade sanctions.

Apart from sharing oil revenues, both sides need to end violence in some parts of their shared border and need to divide up other assets and debt.

Some 2 million people died in Sudan in a decades-long conflict over religion, ethnicity, ideology and oil, although the secession last month was very peaceful.

Sudanese oil flows mainly to Asia, with China buying more than a half of total volumes. South Sudan’s production is dominated by Chinese and Indian companies, which have been marketing their crude themselves so far.

Last month, South Sudan also signed a deal with trading house Glencore to help it market crude but a dispute between various officials has threatened to derail the agreement.

(Writing by Dmitry Zhdannikov; Editing by Anthony Barker and David Gregorio)

  Sudan reportedly blocks South’s oil shipment

August 4, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – A shipment of oil produced in South Sudan has been prevented from leaving Port Sudan for dispute over fees, an official in Juba said today.

JPEG - 39.5 kb
Sudan’s new currency sits behind a window at the central bank in Khartoum, Sudan (AP)

Garang Deng, South Sudan’s oil minister, said that the oil tanker contained 600,000 barrels and that Port Sudan authorities refused to let it proceed to its destination unless it service fees are paid upfront.

“We have failed to reach solutions with the government of Sudan that would guarantee that the ship would depart at the specified time,” Deng said.

“I have contacted the finance and energy ministers of the Northern government but they refused to talk about it on the pretext that they have meetings” he added.

The South Sudan official warned that shipment delay could inflict penalties on Juba according to the terms of the contract with the buyers. He provided no details on who the sale was made to or the price.

The oil-rich nation became an independent state last month after its citizens voted almost unanimously in favor of secession from the Arab-Muslim dominated north. But the latter contains the infrastructure and pipelines that transports the oil from the landlocked South to Port Sudan.

Both sides are still negotiating the transit fees to be assessed per barrel for usage of the pipelines. The figures proposed by Khartoum initially were called “daylight robbery” by Juba.

South Sudan officials have threatened to seek other venues to export their oil and rejected any revenue sharing arrangement similar to the one that was in place prior to July 9th.

The first oil shipment containing 1 million barrels was made in July out of Port Sudan without any issues.

But many observers believe that there are mounting signs of an economic warfare between the two countries.

In recent weeks Khartoum and Juba traded accusations over the almost simultaneous introduction of new currency in the two countries.

The ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in Sudan said that the South breached an understanding that the North and South would maintain one currency for an interim period of at least six months.

Furthermore, the situation got more tense after Sudan said it rejected a request from the South that old Sudanese pound in circulation in the new country be exchanged with foreign currency or used in bilateral trade.

It is estimated that $700 million worth of old Sudanese pound is circulated in South Sudan. Khartoum said it has taken measures to prevent the old notes from being sneaked from their Southern neighbor.

This week, the Central Bank of South Sudan reduced the window for exchanging the old Sudanese pound from 90 days to 45. The North on the other hand said banks would open once again over the Friday-Saturday weekend to allow citizens to get new notes to “speed up” the process.

While the South would be hit if the old pound it had bought for dollars in the run-up to independence would be worthless, there is also a risk for the north: If the south tried exporting old notes back there it would add to inflationary pressures.

(ST)