S. Sudan says Sudan air raids kill 17 civilians

December 29, 2011 21:11

KHARTOUM - South Sudan's armed forces accused Sudan of killing 17 southern civilians in airstrikes on Thursday, and said it had put its troops in the disputed border region on "maximum alert".

Sudan's military spokesman denied the accusation, saying the armed forces had not carried out any bombings in South Sudan.

South Sudan seceded in July under a 2005 peace deal that ended decades of civil war between north and south, but the two have remained at loggerheads over unresolved issues including oil, the disputed Abyei region and the location of the border.

The two sides have traded accusations of backing rebels on either side of the border. Their armed forces clashed in a rare direct confrontation in a disputed region this month.

South Sudan's military spokesman Philip Aguer said Sudanese forces continued to bomb on Thursday, in what he said was the second day of intensified airstrikes.

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