Sudan accepts cease-fire proposal in oil-rich areas
The Sudanese government announced Saturday it accepted a proposal put forward by the United Nations and NGO's for a cease-fire with the country's rebels in the oil-rich southern regions of Al-Wihda and Bahr Al-Ghazal.
Dhieu Matik, an aide to the Sudanese government's peace adviser Ghazi Salaheddin Atabani made the announcement during a press conference but did not elaborate on the origins of the proposal, according to AFP.
Nor did he specify a date for the cease-fire which he said was aimed at allowing "humanitarian aid to reach these regions and rebuild confidence between the two sides," namely the government and the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA), at war since 1983.
Sudan's civil war has pitted the mainly Muslim Arab north against the south's Christians and animists.
Sudan produces 205,000 barrels of crude per day, 145,000 of which are exported.
Several foreign oil firms, including Canadian and Chinese, are operating from the Al-Wihda and Bahr Al-Ghazal provinces.
In a separate development, Sudan's undersecretary of state for foreign affairs Mutrif Seddiq accused the SPLA of having violated a previous cease-fire accord reached in January and concerning the Nuba Mountains region.
He accused the rebels of having "targeted shepherds while they were sleeping at night, killing some of them," he told reporters, adding that the incident occurred at the beginning of May, near Tariang.
He added the government would lodge a formal complaint with the United States, who sponsored the Nuba cease-fire. (Albawaba.com)
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