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North, south Sudan agree on buffer zone along borders

English.news.cn   2011-06-30 04:34:42 FeedbackPrintRSS

Nafie Ali Nafie, Assistant to the Sudanese President, talks to reporters upon return from Addis Ababa at the airport in Khartoum, Sudan, June 29, 2011. North and south Sudan on Wednesday agreed in principle to establish a buffer zone on their joint borders, provided that an Ethiopian military force would be tasked with monitoring the buffer zone. "We have agreed, in principle, on establishment of a buffer zone around the 1956 border line and at a distance of 10 kilometers north and 10 kilometers south," Nafie told reporters. (Xinhua/Mohammed Babiker)

KHARTOUM, June 29 (Xinhua) -- North and south Sudan on Wednesday agreed in principle to establish a buffer zone on their joint borders, provided that an Ethiopian military force would be tasked with monitoring the buffer zone.

"We have agreed, in principle, on establishment of a buffer zone around the 1956 border line and at a distance of 10 kilometers north and 10 kilometers south," Nafie Ali Nafie, Assistant to the Sudanese President, told reporters upon return from Addis Ababa Wednesday.

"This buffer zone will be under a limited civil supervision and guarding groups at a number of points in north and south Sudan. We have agreed that the guarding groups would be from Ethiopian troops," he added.

The Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa has hosted a new round of negotiations between representatives of the National Congress Party (NCP) in north Sudan and the Sudan people's Liberation Movement (SPLM) in south Sudan to discuss the outstanding issues between the two sides before the declaration of south Sudan independence on July 9.

The two sides discussed essential issues including the security situation between north and south Sudan, the status of the southerners living in the north and the northerners living in the south, border demarcation and the conflict in South Kordofan region.

The Sudanese presidential assistant, meanwhile, denied that the two sides have agreed on cessation of hostilities in south Kordofan on north-south Sudan border, which has witnessed armed clashes between the Sudanese army and military groups belonging to the SPLM-northern Sudan sector.

"It will be subject for further consultations by a joint military committee that has been agreed to form," he said.

South Kordofan includes the country's oil-rich area of Abyei, which is an issue of dispute between north and south Sudan besides the issue of the popular consultation and the future of the sons of Nuba Mountains' area who have fought alongside the SPLM during the north-south civil war.

In the meantime, Nafie disclosed an agreement between north and south Sudan on a nine-month period to adjust the status of the southerners living in the north and the northerners living in the south.

On July 9, 2011, south Sudan would officially declare independence in accordance with the result of the referendum on self-determination for southern Sudan, conducted on Jan. 9, 2011.

Editor: yan

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