JUBA - About 35,000 Sudanese refugees fleeing fighting between the army and rebels have crossed into South Sudan in the past three weeks, stretching water and aid resources to their limits, the United Nations said on Monday.

Fighting erupted in Sudan's South Kordofan state in June 2011 and spread to nearby Blue Nile in September. Both states border South Sudan, which seceded from Khartoum under a 2005 agreement that ended decades of civil war.

The UN refugee agency UNHCR said 35,000 people had arrived in South Sudan from Blue Nile and more were on the way, joining about 70,000 refugees already living in crowded camps.

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