Monday, June 6, 2011

Sudan rejects UNSC pullout demand

Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Ahmad Karti

Source: Press TV

Sudan has dismissed a request by the UN Security Council (UNSC) to pull its forces out of the oil-producing region of Abyei on the border between the South and the North.

“Sudan does not need to be asked to pull its army out of Abyei because this is a Sudanese territory,” AFP quoted Sudan's Foreign Minister Ali Ahmad Karti as saying on Sunday.

“The army's entering the area to handle the security situation there was necessitated by the continued security breaches committed by the other party,” Karti added, referring to South Sudan troops.

The Sudanese top diplomat went on to say that their forces will remain in the region until an agreement is reached.

Karti's remarks come a day after the UNSC called on Khartoum to withdraw its forces from Abyei. The council claimed Sudan's military operations in Abyei are “serious violations” of the so-called 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

The 2005 deal ended more than two decades of civil war between the rival sides. In January, majority of southerners voted for secession from the North in accordance with the agreement.

The agreement had left the fate of Abyei to a later referendum by the residents of the region to choose whether to join the South or the North.

Sudanese Armed Forces seized control of the oil-producing region on May 21. The measure came after troops from the South fired shots at a convoy of northern forces and UN peacekeepers on May 19.

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