KHARTOUM - Sudan wants to settle all its differences with South Sudan through talks, but sees little hope of a swift resolution while it believes Juba is backing rebels that threaten its territorial integrity, a senior ruling party official said on Sunday.

The African neighbors came close to a war when border fighting escalated in April, the worst violence since South Sudan split off and declared its independence a year ago under a 2005 agreement that ended decades of civil war.

The two have recently been trying to reconcile their many differences via talks, but Ibrahim Ghandour, a senior official in President Omar al-Hassan Bashir's National Congress Party (NCP), said it was hard to envisage progress without first resolving border security issues.

"We cannot cooperate on the economy, politics, oil, whatever, when the other party is endangering our security," Ghandour told Reuters in an interview. "We cannot build trust when the other party is supporting rebel movements with weapons and sometimes with personnel."


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