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Sudan says Juba unrest won’t impact cooperation agreements

December 17, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese government on Tuesday said it does not expect the ongoing unrest in South Sudan’s capital of Juba to affect implementation of the cooperation agreements signed between the two countries since last year.

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FILE PHOTO - Ambassador Mutrif Siddiq

"This is an internal situation from which the south is suffering and it is difficult to talk right now about the implementation of the agreements between the two countries," Sudan’s ambassador in Juba Mutrif Sideeg told the pro-government Ashorooq TV.

"I confirm that the process of cooperation will not be impacted, but we will be working to have it proceed as planned as soon as things return to normal," Sideeg added.

Last weekend clashes erupted between military units that the government in Juba called a coup attempt and blamed it on former VP Riek Machar and other senior officials from the country’s ruling party of Sudan people Liberation Movement (SPLM).

Today the South Sudan government announced that it arrested ten former officials and that it is seeking the arrest of Machar, suspended SPLM Secretary General Pagan Amum, former Unity governor Taban Deng and other ex-ministers.

A curfew was imposed by Juba though it has not stopped intense gunfire from erupting yesterday and today.

Diplomats in New York said that the United Nations peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous told a closed session of the UN Security Council (UNSC) today that according to local sources, the hospitals recorded approximately 500 deaths and 800 injuries.

Sideeg said that they have no reports of Sudanese deaths or injuries though he noted that stray bullets may have hit some of their nationals. He added that they should have a clearer picture on Wednesday.

The envoy said that the situation in Juba has stabilized since Tuesday afternoon with the exception of sporadic gunfire in the evening.

(ST)