Mobile  |  About us  |  Photos  |  Videos  |  Subscriptions  |  RSS Feeds  |  Today's Paper  |  Classifieds  |  Contact Us
The Daily Star
SATURDAY, 19 APR 2014
01:09 PM Beirut time
Weather    
Beirut
27 °C
Blom Index
BLOM
1,214.01down
Middle East
Follow this story Print RSS Feed ePaper share this
African mediators press Sudans to end stand-off
Reuters
African Union mediator Thabo Mbeki (L) and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn address a news conference on the outcome of the Sudan-South Sudan summit in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, January 5, 2013. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri
African Union mediator Thabo Mbeki (L) and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn address a news conference on the outcome of the Sudan-South Sudan summit in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, January 5, 2013. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri
A+ A-

ADDIS ABABA: The African Union sought on Monday to defuse hostilities between Sudan and South Sudan that brought them close to war last year and end a freeze on oil exports that threatens to wreck their economies.

South Sudan seceded from the north in 2011 after decades of wars but border disputes and disagreements over oil pipeline fees have dragged on, delaying the economic development that would bring hope to their war-weary populations.

The South shut down its oil production of 350,000 barrels per day a year ago to try to force a cut in the fees it pays the north to pipe its crude to a coastal terminal for export.

With oil the lifeline of both economies, the move is straining their state budgets, weakening their currencies, stoking inflation and worsening economic hardship.

The African Union (AU) brought together Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir and South Sudan's Salva Kiir a week ago in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to press them to fulfil promises made in September to pull back troops from the north-south border.

The creation of a buffer zone along the frontier would help defuse tensions, perhaps enough for the flow of oil to resume.

After that meeting, AU mediator Thabo Mbeki said both sides had agreed to set up the buffer zone. The regional body planned to publish a timeframe on Sunday, when the talks were supposed to resume. But both delegations arrived late, delaying the start by a day.

Monday's session, attended by Sudanese Defence Minister Abdel Raheem Mohammed Hussein and his southern counterpart John Kong Nyuon, focused again on how to implement the buffer zone, AU officials in Addis Ababa said.

"The discussions will centre on overall implementation of the agreements," said Atif Kiir, spokesman for South Sudan's delegation. There was no immediate comment from Sudan.

Animosity runs high between Bashir's government in Khartoum and his former foes up the Nile in Juba.

Nearly 2 million people died in a north-south civil war that left South Sudan economically devastated and awash with guns.

Khartoum now accuses the south of supporting a rebellion within Sudan by former members of the southern insurgent army who found themselves north of the border at partition.

South Sudan has denied supporting the rebels.

Sudan's defence minister said last month that the two sides would tackle the sensitive issue for the first time in the latest round of talks.

 
Home Middle East
 
     
 
Ethiopia
Advertisement
Comments  

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement


Baabda 2014
Advertisement
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Linked In Follow us on Google+ Subscribe to our Live Feed
Multimedia
Images  
Pictures of the day
A selection of images from around the world- Friday April 18, 2014
View all view all
Advertisement
Rami G. Khouri
Rami G. Khouri
Why Israeli-Palestinian talks fail
Michael Young
Michael Young
Why confuse gibberish with knowledge?
David Ignatius
David Ignatius
Echoes of 1914 characterize the Ukraine crisis
View all view all
Advertisement
cartoon
 
Click to View Articles
 
 
News
Business
Opinion
Sports
Culture
Technology
Entertainment
Privacy Policy | Anti-Spamming Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright Notice
© 2014 The Daily Star - All Rights Reserved - Designed and Developed By IDS