[QODLink]
Africa

AU probes Sudan rebel allegations

African Union starts investigation as Sudan and South Sudan level accusations of helping rebels against each other.

Last Modified: 22 Jul 2013 20:47
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Each territory accuses the other of helping rebel groups in the countries [EPA]

African nations have started an investigation into allegations by Sudan and South Sudan that they are supporting rebels operating in each other's territory, the African Union said.

The AU and east African bloc, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), on Monday launched the investigative panel in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

The three senior military officers begin their six-week mission ahead of an August 7 deadline from Khartoum to shut a pipeline carrying South Sudanese oil for export.

In a surprise move in early June, Sudan gave companies 60 days to stop transporting oil from South Sudan after President Omar al-Bashir accused the Juba government of backing rebels in the north.

Juba denies supporting the fighters and in turn says Khartoum assists rebels on southern soil.

Also on Monday, regional nations began determining the centreline of a demilitarised buffer zone that is to straddle the 2,000-kilometre undemarcated border between the two countries.

"The launch of these mechanisms underscores the seriousness with which the African Union and IGAD regard relations between Sudan and South Sudan," the AU said.

"Since 2010, Africa has been working tirelessly to promote two mutually viable states, and these current allegations threaten this objective, and in fact pose a threat to regional peace and security."

Pipeline shut

Although the buffer zone was being set up, analysts say Bashir ordered the pipeline shut after continued rebel attacks humiliated the Sudanese authorities.

"Everybody knows that both of them are supporting rebels," an African diplomat told AFP last week. "It's clear as daylight."

At the same time, Juba continues to provide "logistical and coordination support", including access to rear bases in the South's Unity state, for the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF), Small Arms Survey said.

285

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.