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Sudanese president declares two-week truce in South Kordofan


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Sudanese president declares two-week truce in South Kordofan

2011-08-24 01:06:35 GMT+7 (ICT)

KHARTOUM (BNO NEWS) -- Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir on Tuesday announced a temporary ceasefire in the country's war-stricken state of South Kordofan, the Sudan Tribune reported.

Al-Bashir said the ceasefire would last for two weeks when addressing a conference on civil administration. The announcement comes two days after talks with the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) rebels dissolved in disagreement.

According to the SPLM-N, the meeting held in Khartoum between Al-Bashir and SPLM-N leader Malik Aggar failed because Al-Bashir insisted that any talks between his ruling National Congress Party and the SPLM must be conducted directly and without the involvement of a third party.

Fighting between Sudan's army and SPLM-N rebels in South Kordofan erupted in early June after Al-Bashir ordered the forcible disarmament of SPLM-N fighters following the secession of South Sudan. The United Nations estimates that at least 200,000 people have been killed, injured or forced to flee their homes and land since the fighting erupted.

Last week, the UN urged an independent investigation into possible crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in Southern Kordofan in June. According to a UN report, extrajudicial killings, arbitrary arrests and illegal detention, enforced disappearances, attacks against civilians, looting of civilian homes and destruction of property took place in the region, resulting in massive displacements.

Sudan this week announced through its UN envoy that the government will let six UN agencies to enter South Kordofan under the supervision of the country's humanitarian coordinator to assess the situation. However, Al-Bashir said on Tuesday that he had ordered the authorities not to allow a single foreign agency into South Kordofan.

Southern Kordofan lies in Sudan but borders the newly independent South Sudan, which became the world's newest country when it broke away from Sudan on July 9.

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-- © BNO News All rights reserved 2011-08-24

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