January 28, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) on Saturday announced that fighters from the Sudan People Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) launched an assault on the site of a Chinese construction company in South Kordofan.
- Governor of South Kordofan Ahmed Haroun (Reuters)
SAF spokesperson al-Sawarmi Khalid Sa’ad was quoted by state media as saying that the unnamed company is working in the construction of the roads between the towns of Al-Abbasiya and Rashad near al-Magrah area.
He said that the army is pursuing the rebels who fled the area adding that they have no information on casualties.
The governor of South Kordofan Ahmed Haroun confirmed the attack and accused SPLM-N of targeting development in the region.
"This attack targets the security and stability of these companies and tends to halt the big development projects in the state. Everybody is aware that the Chinese company is operating on a vital sector of the circular road which has been a dream for the people of the state, particularly at the eastern part, for tens of years," Haroun said.
Haroun asserted that SAF has immediately and firmly dealt with the situation adding that the situation needs a high degree of wisdom so that none of the 35 people working in the company, most of them Chinese, are harmed.
Sudan’s oil-producing state of South Kordofan, which borders the newly independent state of South Sudan and the war-battered region of Darfur, descended into violence since last June when SAF clashed with SPLM-N led by Abdul Aziz al-Hilu.
The conflict in South Kordofan, which escalated into heavy artillery and aerial bombardment, is believed to have been erupted after SAF attempted to forcibly disarm SPLM fighters. The violence also followed contentious gubernatorial elections in which Haroun, the incumbent governor of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP), was declared winner over his deputy Al-Hilu who disputed the result saying the vote was rigged.