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Thread: Sudan rebels attack oil field

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    Sudan rebels attack oil field

    Sudan rebels attack oil field

    KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) -- Darfur rebels have attacked an oil field in Southern Kordofan, making a rare eastward extension of their campaign toward central Sudan, the rebels and government said Monday.

    The National Redemption Front said its fighters had seized the Abu Jabra oil field on the edge of South Darfur and Southern Kordofan on Sunday.

    "The government garrison guarding the oil field was totally destroyed," the NRF said in a statement. "Numerous soldiers, including high ranking officers and generals, have surrendered."

    But the Sudanese military said its forces had repelled the attack and were in full control of the field.

    The army "inflicted heavy causalities on the rebels, who withdrew from the area," said a military spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with official policy.

    The NRF, a rebel alliance that opposes the May peace agreement, also claimed to have shot down a military helicopter and captured a "substantial amount of weapons, ammunitions, anti-aircraft missiles and military vehicles."

    But the government forces denied this, saying the rebels had tried to extend Darfur's violence to other parts of Sudan but had failed.

    "To put it simply, they did not achieve what they were looking for," the military spokesman said.

    The NRF stronghold has traditionally been in Northern Darfur, and its conducting a strike on the border South Darfur and Southern Kordofan shows a considerable leap in range.

    A Sudanese official in the oil industry said the state-owned Abu Jabra field produces up to 10,000 barrels per day -- a relatively small output.

    "The capacities seem to have been significantly damaged, but it won't affect Sudan's production overall," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

    Sudanese officials say the country produces about 500,000 barrels per day and that oil revenue should be at least $4 billion this year, more than half of the government's income.

    Most of Sudan's oil reserves are in the south of the country, which is now semi autonomous under a separate peace agreement that southern rebels signed with the government in January 2005.

    Sunday's raid on the oil field came amid heightened violence in Darfur, where pro-government janjaweed militia have been accused by the United Nations of forcing 60,000 people to flee their homes this month.

    After the Abu Jabra attack, South Darfur officials accused Minni Minnawi, the one rebel chief who signed the May peace accord and subsequently took a government position, of having ceded terrain to the NRF to facilitate attacks.

    But the NRF's head of strategic planning, Abdullahi el-Tom, denied this, telling The Associated Press his group had occupied Minnawi's territory in South Darfur by force.

    In July, NRF rebels ventured east of Darfur and attacked the Northern Kordofan town of Hamarat Sheikh, killing more than a dozen people.

    Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/af...dan.darfur.ap/
    To sit down with these men and deal with them as the representatives of an enlightened and civilized people is to deride ones own dignity and to invite the disaster of their treachery - General Matthew Ridgway

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    Fighting in Sudan kills 150, wounds 400 By ALFRED de MONTESQUIOU, Associated Press Writer
    28 minutes ago



    KHARTOUM, Sudan - Days of fighting between former rebels and government forces killed more than 150 people and wounded at least 400 in a southern Sudanese town, a U.N. official said Saturday.

    The battle was one of the worst breaches of a January 2005 peace agreement that ended 21 years of civil war in the south, a conflict separate from the ethnic bloodletting in Sudan's western Darfur region.

    Aid workers said the fighting began when a government-allied militia tried to kill a local leader of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement in Malakal, a port town about 400 miles south of Sudan's capital, Khartoum.

    The former rebels retaliated, and large-scale fighting erupted Tuesday, with the two sides using artillery, tanks and armored personnel carriers. The former rebels captured Malakal's airport before U.N. officials brokered a cease-fire Friday.

    The U.N. mission in Sudan appealed for volunteer nurses and supplies to cope with 400 to 500 wounded fighters and civilians. The mission said bodies were strewn in the Nile River, one of the main sources of drinking water for the town of about 150,000 people.

    "There are over 150 dead," said Peter Maxwell, the field manager in Malakal for the U.N. mission.

    Aid workers said most of the dead appeared to be combatants from both sides, but at least two dozen appeared to be civilians. They said government forces and former rebels were separately collecting their dead.

    Maxwell said U.N. peacekeepers were patrolling the town and described the situation as "fairly calm" since Friday's cease-fire.

    "There are many indicators that life is approaching something normal," he told The Associated Press in a telephone interview.

    But international observers in Malakal said both the army and former rebels were massing forces, and worried the truce might not hold, especially if the army tried to reclaim the airport. The observers spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

    The Sudanese military had no comment on the violence.

    U.N. officials expressed concern about contamination of the Nile in an area where cholera outbreaks are common.

    "Though United Nations peacekeepers have provided critical support to the Malakal government to dispose of the dead, the Nile remains contaminated by bodies as a result of the fighting," the U.N. mission said in a statement.

    Malakal has remained volatile despite the peace accord between Sudan's Muslim government in the north and the mostly Christian rebels in the south. The town lies next to Sudan's north-south boundary and close to some of the country's richest oil fields.

    Nonessential U.N. staff and most aid workers have been evacuated.

    Some 10,000 U.N. peacekeepers are in southern Sudan to monitor the peace agreement and help reconstruct the ravaged region.
    To sit down with these men and deal with them as the representatives of an enlightened and civilized people is to deride ones own dignity and to invite the disaster of their treachery - General Matthew Ridgway

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    Sudanese army reportedly lost 34 military in Malakal fighting
    Friday 1 December 2006 04:10. Printer-Friendly version

    Nov 30, 2006 (MALAKAL) — Major fighting between SPLA and Sudan Armed Forces in Malakal seems to have ended, with heavy casualties among civilians and soldiers. The Sudanese army lost 34 officers and soldiers.

    Malakal fighting ended with heavy casualties among the civilians and SPLA and SAF. In a meeting yesterday when the UNMIS commander who came from Khartoum, the SAF said they lost thirty soldiers and four high-ranking military officers. SPLA are yet to know their exact numbers because they are still counting the platoons; Sudan Radio Service reported.

    50 wounded SPLA soldiers were today airlifted to Yei, while 108 SAF wounded were airlifted to Khartoum, the Sudan Radio service reported. We have not been able to obtain estimates of civilian casualties.

    However, civilians have lost property estimated to be worth millions of Sudanese dinar, particularly in the Madiria Market, Asosa and Baam areas of Malakal. Witnesses say some traders were shot dead as they were trying to protect their property from looters.

    Reports from Malakal indicate there is still widespread looting taking place, and casualty figures are expected to rise.

    A ceasefire was declared on Wednesday evening after United Nations officials, along with high-ranking SPLA and SAF commanders, arrived in Malakal to ease the tensions.

    Sudanese First Vice President Salva Kiir has cut short a visit to South Africa to monitor developments in Malakal, newspapers said.

    CAUSES OF THE CLASHES

    The UN revealed in a statement this morning that they have not confirmed what caused the fighting to erupt, but according to an SPLA officer in Malakal, Gak Chol, last week both the SAF and the SPLA agreed that militia leaders Gabriel Gatwic (Tanginya), and Mabor Dhol would leave Malakal and go to Khartoum as part of their militias’ joining the SAF. The CPA requires that all armed groups join either the SAF or SPLA.

    However, according to Chol, both Dhol and Gatwic did not go to Khartoum. In response, the SPLA attacked Mabor Dhol at his residence. Dhol’s and Gatwic’s militias then launched attacks on the SPLA in defense of their leaders.

    Joint Integrated Forces commander Marial Chanuong said that the two sides are still discussing what steps must be taken to restore peace, law and order.

    Not included in the peace deal however was the South Sudan Defence Forces (SSDF), a southern movement backed by Khartoum and to which Gabriel Tanginya belongs.

    Its members were required by the peace agreement to align with either the Sudan armed forces or the SPLA but the militia is not entirely disbanded and has been a source of instability in some regions. The Upper Nile state is one of Sudan’s key oil-producing states.

    A Sudanese army spokesman denied any involvement of the regular army in the clashes that rocked Malakal from Sunday to Tuesday and forced the UN to evacuate some of its staff.

    UN HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE

    According to the UN mission in Sudan, spokesperson, Radhia Achouri, the security situation in Malakal has been largely restored to normalcy, following joint intervention by senior level representatives from the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLM) and the Force Commander of the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS); Radhia Achouri, UN spokeswoman in Khartoum, said.

    SAF and SPLA, together with UNMIS, moved swiftly to put an end to the hostilities. A delegation from the Ceasefire Joint Monitoring Committee (CJMC) comprising high-ranking officers from SPLA and the SAF as well UNMIS Force Commander went to Malakal yesterday 29 November in a bid to help restore calm and to assess the situation on the ground.

    An emergency CJMC meeting held the same day unanimously condemned the violence as a major ceasefire violation and expressed deep shock at the heavy loss of lives and property. In addition, the CJMC demanded an immediate ceasefire by both parties, as well as the disengagement and the redeployment of troops to their respective positions prior to the clashes. The CJMC decided also that a joint investigation will conducted in order to identify those responsible for the CPA violation and bring them to account.

    Furthermore, the CJMC decided to request immediate humanitarian assistance to help in addressing the needs that have arisen as a result of the clashes.

    Implementation of the CJMC decisions is underway. The SAF and SPLA members of the CJMC, as well as the Force Commander, remain in Malakal and will continue to consult with the local parties.

    The United Nations and other international aid organizations have acted immediately to provide the assistance requested. Other specialized teams will be deployed to Malakal in the next twenty four hours.

    UN Hospital in Malakal has been treating some of the people injured during the clashes. A medical team from the hospital in Kadugli has been put on stand by for immediate deployment to Malakal. Surgical supplies provided by UNMIS are on their way to Malakal today. Furthermore, UNMIS Engineers in Malakal are supporting the efforts of the local Government to bury the bodies of those killed during the clashes.

    The UN Deputy Resident Humanitarian Coordinator for Southern Sudan and the Head of the Office of Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Juba, together with and interagency team, will head tomorrow morning to Malakal to assess the humanitarian needs and to supplement the assessment team that is already in place.

    The objective is to provide an immediate response to the needs of the civilian population. There are locally stored humanitarian supplies to address some of the needs. Additional supplies will be brought from Juba as requested following the humanitarian assessment.
    To sit down with these men and deal with them as the representatives of an enlightened and civilized people is to deride ones own dignity and to invite the disaster of their treachery - General Matthew Ridgway

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    Darfur rebels down helicopters

    22/12/2006 17:51 - (SA)

    Cairo - Rebels in Sudan's western Darfur region said on Friday that they had downed two helicopters and killed 13 Sudanese officers.

    They also denied that 200 members of their movement had died in a government attack.

    "The Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) and its allies categorically deny information put out by the Sudanese army on Thursday," said the rebel movement in a statement received by AFP in Cairo, Egypt.

    The group said the "government forces and Janjaweed militiamen had suffered heavy losses and fled towards the town of Kutum, leaving several dead behind them - including 13 officers of different ranks".

    The Sudanese army said on Thursday that it had killed 200 rebels when it repulsed a massive rebel attack on Kutum in northern Darfur on Wednesday.

    The army said four of its soldiers had been killed and 20 wounded in the attack.

    Friday's rebel statement also said that the SLM/A had "shot down two military helicopters, destroyed seven military vehicles and seized 13 cars containing military equipment".

    Efforts to agree on peace

    The group said that in making its claims, Khartoum wanted to "disguise the series of defeats suffered recently by government forces and the Janjaweed" proxy militia.

    The SLM/A said six of its members had been killed in the Kutum operation and 17 wounded.

    The group belongs to the National Redemption Front (NRF), a coalition created by movements that did not sign the Abuja accord in Nigeria in May.

    The accord is aimed at ending the conflict in Darfur, where the United Nations says at least 200 000 people have died from the combined effect of war and famine in four years.

    Wednesday's fighting came amid intensified efforts to reach an agreement on the deployment of UN peacekeepers in Darfur as Washington warned that Khartoum had until year's end to accept it or face coercive action.

    The conflict erupted in 2003 when ethnic minority rebels launched an uprising that was fiercely repressed by government troops and its allied Janjaweed militia.

    A peace deal between the Khartoum government and the main rebel faction from the Sudan Liberation Movement was signed in the Nigerian capital in May.

    http://www.news24.com/News24/Africa/...048115,00.html
    To sit down with these men and deal with them as the representatives of an enlightened and civilized people is to deride ones own dignity and to invite the disaster of their treachery - General Matthew Ridgway

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