US calls for end to fighting in Sudan’s Blue Nile

September 3, 2011 5:26 am

, WASHINGTON, Sept 3 – The United States called Friday to an end to hostilities in Sudan’s Blue Nile state amid fighting between the army and forces loyal to the elected governor.

Washington “is deeply concerned about the fighting that broke out September 1 between the Sudan Armed Forces and the forces of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army-North in Blue Nile State in Sudan, as well as the ongoing troop mobilization on both sides,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.

“We call on both parties to cease hostilities and for the SAF to end aerial bombings. We also call on both parties to protect civilians and engage in dialogue to prevent further escalation of violence.”

The United States also renewed its call on both sides “to allow unfettered humanitarian access and human rights monitoring of affected populations in Southern Kordofan, as well as Blue Nile,” the spokeswoman said.

Sudan on Friday declared a state of emergency in a flashpoint border state and appointed a military ruler amid the clashes.

The clashes in Blue Nile state come less than two months after South Sudan’s secession and follow warnings that the three-month-old conflict in nearby South Kordofan is likely to spill along Sudan’s new international border with the south.


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