Sudan Cuts off Deals with South Sudan
KHARTOUM, Sudan - Sudan on Sunday cancelled nine security and economic pacts with South Sudan, ending a brief interlude of harmonious relations after border clashes.
"We will stop all nine agreements, not only oil," Information Minister Ahmed Bilal Osman said at a press conference.
His announcement followed an order Saturday from President Omar al-Bashir to shut the pipeline carrying South Sudanese crude for export.
The command came after Bashir warned the South over backing rebels. South Sudan's government in Juba denies supporting insurgents in the north.
After months of intermittent clashes, Sudan and South Sudan agreed in early March to detailed timetables for normalizing relations by setting up a border buffer zone and implementing eight other key pacts.
These allowed for a free flow of people and goods across the undemarcated and disputed border, and a resumption of oil flows which South Sudan cut off early last year after accusing Khartoum of theft.
Last September the two nations agreed to the nine pacts but they didn't take effect as Khartoum pushed for guarantees that South Sudan would no longer back the rebels.
In March, Juba and Khartoum finally agreed on detailed timetables to set all the deals in motion. A month later Bashir visited Juba, symbolising the then-easing tensions.
It was his first trip there since South Sudan's independence in July 2011, under a peace agreement following a 22-year civil war.
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