July 1, 2012 (ABYEI) - South Sudan on Sunday dismissed claims of providing support to Sudanese rebels, saying such allegations are being used to provide a scapegoat for Khartoum’s "failure to address its internal challenges".
Sudanese army spokesperson said Khartoum is preparing to carry out attacks on rebel groups wherever they are. He further pointed that Juba continues its military and logistical support to the rebels despite the United Nations resolution 2046 which demands a stop to such practices.
For two weeks Sudan has been witnessing a series of protests against the cut of oil subsidies and increase of taxes. The demonstrations which spread across the country call for regime change in the country.
Nhial Deng Nhial, South Sudan’s foreign minister denied accusations that his country is backing Sudanese rebels. The claims were reported by Khartoum to the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) currently hosting talks between the two states as part of the international community’s efforts to end the post independence dispute.
"Of course, South Sudan in no way would be involved in destroying the peace they have been working very hard to build with Sudan. We are looking for viability of the two states. So far we have had report after report of allegations, but evidence has been very hard to come by," he said.
Nhial made the remark in an interview with Sudan Tribune on Sunday, during which he said the leadership of the country’s ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) is fully aware of the presence of individuals in the Sudanese government creating “distraction" and being made into a "scapegoat" for its neighbour’s internal problems.
He said a report submitted by the African mediation team on Friday makes no mention of the claims that the South Sudanese government is supporting the rebels in Sudan.
Sudan and South Sudan are holding talks brokered by the African Union (AU) panel to establish a buffer zone and a joint political and security mechanism (JPSM) in order to ensure to end the accusations of support to rebel groups.
The two sides will meet again on 5 July. If they fail to reach a deal over this issue as well as the other pending matters, the mediation team have to submit a framework agreement to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) which has threatened to vote for economic sanctions against the two sides.