WASHINGTON, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama has dispatched 45 U.S. troops to South Sudan to protect U.S. nationals and embassy there amid the African nation's volatile security situation.
In a letter sent to Congress on Thursday, Obama said the troops left for South Sudan on Wednesday, and would remain there until the situation improves.
Meanwhile, more U.S. citizens were evacuated from South Sudan on Thursday, as government troops and rebel forces continued to clash.
A private charter flight lifted some 130 persons from capital Juba, among whom were U.S. citizens and third-country nationals, State Department Spokeswoman Marie Harf told a regular news briefing.
She said a small number of Americans also flew out of the country aboard a British military aircraft.
A day earlier, Washington airlifted three groups of American nationals, including non-emergency diplomatic personnel, U.S. citizens and third-country nationals, out of South Sudan.
Since fighting broke out on Sunday between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar, who was removed from office in July, some 450 people have been killed in clashes so far in Juba.
Machar has rejected Kiir's offer for talks, calling instead for the president's removal by the ruling party and the army.
Kiir accused Machar of orchestrating a military coup against him and declared on Monday a state of emergency in the country with a curfew imposed from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. local time.
UN chief deeply concerned over reported violence in South Sudan
UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon said Thursday that he was "deeply concerned about continued reports of growing violence in many parts of South Sudan, human rights abuses and killings fueled by ethnic tensions."Full Story
U.S. evacuates more citizens from South Sudan
WASHINGTON, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) -- The United States on Thursday evacuated more citizens from South Sudan, as the African nation was still engulfed in fighting.Full Story
Britain sends plane to evacuate nationals from South Sudan
LONDON, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) -- A plane was sent to airlift Britons in South Sudan who wish to stay away from the turmoil, said a statement by the Foreign Ministry on Thursday.
"A UK aircraft is en route to Juba to evacuate British nationals who wish to leave from Juba airport on Thursday 19 December," said a spokesperson with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).Full Story