News

    Fears of a Wider Sudan War as South Sudan Holds onto Heglig Oil Field

    Multimedia

    Audio
    Douglas Mpuga

    South Sudan is holding on to the disputed border oil town of Heglig. The newly independent state says it has repulsed an offensive by Sudanese forces meant to retake the town.

    South Sudan seized the oil field on Tuesday, as fighting in the poorly-defined border area escalated and sparked international condemnation and fears of a wider war with its northern neighbor.

    The South Sudanese capital of Juba was Saturday said to be bracing for war. “The city is on a war footing; there are demonstrations being held every day and the youths are going to the headquarters of the Sudanese People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) to register in order to go to the frontline,” said Alfred Taban, the editor of The Juba Monitor newspaper.

    “The mood [in Juba] is very belligerent indeed,” he said, “I can’t see how the situation cannot turn into a full scale war, unless, of course, something is done very fast to disengage the two sides.”

    The border fighting has dampened hopes that the two sides will soon reach an agreement on oil payments and other disputed issues through African Union-brokered talks. Khartoum said it was pulling out of the negotiations on Wednesday.

    In January, landlocked South Sudan shut down its own oil production in a row with Khartoum over how much it should pay to export via pipelines and other northern infrastructure to a terminal at Port Sudan.

    The African Union and the United Nations have demanded an unconditional withdrawal. The African union’s peace and Security Council has called the occupation of Heglig “illegal and unacceptable”, but also condemned Sudan for carrying out aerial bombardments of South Sudan.

    The authorities in Juba, Taban said, say the problem is with Khartoum because it is Khartoum that has been bombing parts of South Sudan, and when the SPLA matched into Heglig they were just retaliating.

    He said the situation is made worse by the fact that the border has not yet been demarcated but theoretically Heglig is in the north (Sudan) although Southerners (South Sudan) have historical claims to that area.

    Taban said an attempt by Sudan to recapture Heglig appears imminent. “There is a lot of mobilization going on in Khartoum – they are distributing arms, vehicles, and ammunition to the Messiriya tribe so that they can go and fight.”

    With this mobilization, he said, there is no doubt they are going to match into Heglig anytime.

    The fighting in Heglig has stopped oil production there affecting almost half of Sudan’s oil output.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Michael Alier
    April 15, 2012 5:46 PM
    THE SPLA STILL HOLDING ON, YOU SHOWED THEY ARABS WORLD THAT WE ARE NOT SCARY TO THEM OR THEIR HATRE ISLAM WE ARE COMING AFTER YOU MY FREINDS BECAUSE SUDAN DO NOT BELONG YOU ARABS SUDAN IS OUR LAND AT THIS POINT I DON,T GOT IT WHY WOULD ANYONE CALL THEM SUDAN THE ARE NOT SUDAN WE ARE THEY SUDANESE

    by: a.e.mockray
    April 14, 2012 10:16 PM
    America should help South Sudan

    by: Artan
    April 14, 2012 9:59 PM
    Dear international commnutiy , Iam suggesting to let the two Sudans their inrtnal affairs solve their selves alone . Iam sure they will agree if we allow them to discuss their border and their oil fields .

    by: A Righteous Person
    April 14, 2012 7:53 PM
    Why does the UN and AU side with Sudan??? Heglig is not part of Sudan, it is part of South Sudan. Heglig is not even named "Heglig" it's called Panthou!
    Why can't the world open their eyes to see that Sudan is victimizing South Sudan.

    by: MICHAEL ALIER
    April 14, 2012 11:45 AM
    THANK YOU SOUTHERNS SUDANESE SOLIDIERS FOR ALL YOU DONE FOR OUR COUNTRY LONG LIVE SPLA LONG LIVE SPLA LONG LIVE SPLA GOD BELESS YOU ALL .

    by: zozimos
    April 14, 2012 9:45 AM
    " but also condemned Sudan for carrying out aerial bombardments of South Sudan."
    How magnanimous of the League Of Arab Nations to allow their African Union slaves to include that. Now how about a guarantee enforced that the Arab supremacists stop the bombing in South Sudan, stop the bombing in Kordafan, stop the bombing in Nuba mountains first.
    If Zionism is racism then Arabism is NAZISM.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora