News

    South Sudan Claims Downing of Sudanese Warplane

    A delegation from South Sudan, headed by Pagan Amum, center, walks with Sudan's Idris Mohamed Abdul-Gadir, right, after their arrival in Khartoum, Sudan, (March 22, 2012 file photo)
    A delegation from South Sudan, headed by Pagan Amum, center, walks with Sudan's Idris Mohamed Abdul-Gadir, right, after their arrival in Khartoum, Sudan, (March 22, 2012 file photo)

    South Sudan said Wednesday that it had shot down a Sudan warplane carrying out a bombing mission on southern positions along their disputed border.  Security talks between the two sides broke off in a hail of angry rhetoric.

    The talks ended with what initially appeared to be signs of progress.  The South Sudanese delegation said it had accepted an African Union proposal on reducing border tensions and was ready to sign.

    The Sudanese team leader, Defense Minister Abdel-Rahim Mohammed Hussein, also sounded positive.  Hussein said he was headed back to Khartoum for consultations on the proposal, and indicated the talks would continue in the coming days. "We had very good meetings here.  We think this paper will need more consultation with the capitals.  So we are going back, so we can do more consultation on this paper, and then we come back and continue," he said.

    AU mediation panel chief Thabo Mbeki spoke at a news conference of significant progress toward an agreement that could ease tensions and clear the way for a summit between the Sudanese and South Sudanese presidents.

    But soon after, the atmosphere turned bitter as South Sudan's chief negotiator, Pagan Amum, announced the downing of a Sudanese MiG-29 fighter jet along the disputed border.  He accused Sudan's defense minister of personally ordering the bombing mission as he left the peace talks.

    "The only explanation is that the team led by the minister of defense is a team that is anti-peace, that is for war.  And indeed they have proven that from the time they left, they attacked South Sudan.  The MiG-29 that attacked South Sudan, of which one has been shot down today, cannot attack without the minister of defense ordering them to attack.  Definitely.  This is very clear.  It's warmongering that made them not to sign [the agreement].  Nothing else," he said.

    A Sudanese military spokesman in Khartoum denied that a plane had been shot down.  He called the report "completely incorrect."

    A member of the AU mediation team said the latest developments would not affect Mr. Mbeki's efforts to ease border tensions that threaten to erupt into all-out war.  But the former South African president acknowledged that the talks are being held in a tense atmosphere.

    "The talks were conducted against the background of the escalating armed conflict along the common border and, like the two parties, the panel, of course, was gravely concerned about this fighting," he said.

    Mr. Mbeki said his panel would immediately travel to the South Sudanese capital, Juba, to continue mediation efforts.  After talks with President Salva Kiir, the panel is expected to fly to Khartoum to hold similar talks with President Omar al-Bashir.

    Mr. Mbeki said the agenda would include the subject of a summit in the coming days at which the two leaders would take up sensitive issues that have stalled in negotiations.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Peter
    April 04, 2012 10:55 AM
    Your are wrong Mr Optimist!

    by: Optimist
    April 04, 2012 9:33 AM
    Unless the current South Sudanese delegations are changed in favor of smarter group there will always be a problem in negotiating out a deal for the people of the newly independent country.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahdai
    X
    Lisa Schlein
    May 31, 2016 1:56 PM
    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahda

    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Mobile App Allows Dutch Muslims to Rate their Imams

    If a young Dutch-Moroccan app developer has his way, Muslims in the Netherlands will soon be able to rate their imams online. Mohamed Mouman says imams rarely get feedback from their followers. He believes his app can give prayer leaders a better picture of what's happening in their communities — and can also keep young people from being radicalized. Serginho Roosblad reports from Amsterdam.
    Video

    Video Moscow Condemns NATO Plans to Beef Up Defense in Eastern Europe, Baltics

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Monday an upcoming "landmark summit" will enhance the alliance's defensive and deterrent presence in eastern Europe and the Baltics. He is visiting Poland ahead of the NATO Summit in Warsaw. Zlatica Hoke reports
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video F-35 Fighter Jet Draws Criticisms as Costs Mount

    America’s latest fighter plane, the F-35, has been mired in controversy. Critics cite cost, faulty design, and the attempt to use it to fill multiple roles. Even the pilot’s helmet is controversial. VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports from New York.
    Video

    Video Concerns Over Civilian Suffering as Iraqi Forces Surround Fallujah

    Thousands of residents are trapped inside the IS-held city ahead of a full scale Iraqi offensive aimed at retaking it.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora