A U.S. court has dismissed a lawsuit against a Canadian energy company accused of a role in human rights violations in southern Sudan.

The judge in New York said there was no evidence to justify the claims made against Talisman Energy, which operated indirectly in Sudan from 1998 to 2003.

The Presbyterian Church of Sudan filed the civil claim on behalf of villagers who were allegedly killed and injured to allow construction of oil fields in Sudan.

Sudan's government also was named in the suit.  The judge ruled that Sudan was in default after it failed to send attorneys to challenge the claims.

Canada's government had criticized the lawsuit, saying the U.S. court had no authority in the matter.

Southern Sudan is struggling to rebuild following a 2005 peace deal that ended two decades of civil war.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.