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Sudan closes its border

Author : Staff Writer | Published: Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Sudanese authorities have officially closed the border with South Sudan, an official has said.

The commissioner of Renk County in West Nile State, Stephen Chan Along, says he has received a notification from officials in White Nile State to end cross border movements.

The decision came a day after Sudanese warplanes allegedly dropped 12 bombs in the county on Wednesday.

Mr Chan told Eye Radio that the closure was based on an order from Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

“We had South Sudanese living in the area called Juda. They [White Nile State authorities] told them to move inside South Sudan territory or go to refugee camps,” he said.

The northern parts of South Sudan use to receive goods from the Sudan.

According to the UN, people displaced by the conflict and those fleeing hunger at their home villages have been crossing the border to Sudan.

In mid-Mrach, the Sudanese Council of Ministers chaired by President Omar al-Bashir, threatened to treat South Sudanese as foreigners when they are accessing health and education service.

This is a new position against the earlier promise to treat South Sudanese as Sudanese nationals.

Presidential Assistant Ibrahim Mahmoud had told the Sudan News Agency that the action would be taken if South Sudan continues to support rebel groups against the Khartoum government.

However, the South Sudanese government has been denying the allegations since its independence in 2011.

The threat to shut the border again came a day before peace talks were set to begin in Addis Ababa between the Sudanese government, the largest opposition party, and several major armed rebel groups.

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