Middle East

U.S. Embassy says evacuating more staff from South Sudan

Those displaced who have enough money to pay the fare get on a bus heading to the capital Juba, some of the thousands who fled the recent fighting between government and rebel forces in Bor by boat across the White Nile, in the town of Awerial, South Sudan Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

JUBA: The U.S. Embassy in the South Sudanese capital Juba has ordered the evacuation of more staff from the country, where more than 1,000 people have been killed in three weeks of fighting between rebels and government troops.

An emergency message to U.S. citizens on the Embassy's website said the move was due to a deteriorating security situation. It said there would be an evacuation flight on Friday arranged by the Department of State.

"We are not suspending our operations. We are just minimising our presence," Ambassador Susan Page told Reuters.

Fighting has continued in the world's youngest state even as negotiators from both sides arrived in neighbouring Ethiopia for peace talks that are meant to focus first on ending the hostilities.

The Juba government and rebels have agreed in principle to a ceasefire but neither side has indicated when they might lay down their arms.





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