North and South Sudan forces battle in disputed Abyei

The armies of North and South Sudan clashed on Wednesday in Abyei, the southern Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) army said, just two days after Khartoum and Juba reached a provisional accord to demilitarise the flashpoint border region.

“There was a clash today at the Kiir [Bahr al-Arab] river, near the bridge, between the SAF (Sudanese Armed Forces — northern army) and the SPLA,” said Philip Aguer, spokesperson for the south’s former rebel SPLA.

“There was shooting but no reports available of any casualties. It was the SAF trying to come south, but just a patrol,” Aguer told Agence France-Presse.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and his southern counterpart Salva Kiir agreed on Monday, during crisis talks in Ethiopia, to a provisional deal to pull the northern army out of the disputed border district, which it occupied last month. — AFP

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