Sudan expels South Sudan rebel force from territories

Khartoum, Jan 12: Sudanese Army Saturday announced that it expelled a rebel force belonging to Riek Machar, the rebel leader in South Sudan, after it crossed into Sudan’s territories and refused to be disarmed.

“On January 9 a force of Nuer tribe, about an infantry battalion, crossed into the Sudanese territories near Higlieg area. They were on the run after the advancement of South Sudan Army towards Bantio, capital of the oil-rich Unity State,” reported Xinhua citing Sudanese army spokesperson Al-Sawarmy Khalid Saad in a statement.

Saad said that there was no South Sudanese troops inside the Sudanese territories. “We reiterate that our territories are now free of any foreign troops and the international law is our means in dealing with any similar cases.”

Sudanese border areas have been witnessing flow of South Sudanese refugees who are fleeing the clashes in their country between South Sudan Army and defectors loyal to former vice- president Riek Machar.

Sudan said it would treat the fleeing South Sudanese as Sudanese citizens and that it would not establish camps at the borders but would allow the southerners to stay anywhere in Sudan.

On Friday, South Sudan Army managed to regain control over Bantio, the capital city of the oil-producing Unity State. It it is currently leading violent battles to restore Bor town, the capital of Jonglie State, the last area held by Machar forces.

IANS