KHARTOUM - South Sudan's first ambassador to Sudan urged the countries to put their conflicts behind them and get back to trading as he took up his post on Wednesday, in the latest sign of thawing relations between the neighbors.

South Sudan split away from Sudan last year under a 2005 peace deal. The countries agreed to exchange ambassadors and patch up their differences but within months came close to war over lingering disputes about oil rights, the position of their border and a string of other issues.

Tensions eased when both sides, under pressure from the United Nations and the African Union, agreed to return to negotiations.

Southern ambassador Mayan Dut Wol arrived in Khartoum in August and presented his credentials to Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir on Wednesday.

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