Sudanese State Officials Killed in Ambush

Posted July 7th, 2012 at 6:25 pm (UTC-5)
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Sudan's official SUNA news agency says rebels killed two state government officials and six other people in an ambush Friday in the war-torn border state of South Kordofan.

The officials killed were the speaker of South Kordofan state's legislative council, Ibrahim Balandiya, and the chief of its strategic planning council, Faisal Bashir.

The Associated Press news agency says SUNA carried a statement Saturday by the Sudanese military calling the killings a “treacherous act” and vowing to avenge them.

The military blamed the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, for the killings, but the rebel group has denied involvement.

The SPLM-N has been fighting Sudanese forces for more than a year in the states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile along the border with South Sudan.

Rebels of the SPLM-N sided with the South during Sudan's 22-year civil war, which ended in a 2005 peace agreement and South Sudan's independence last July.

The Khartoum government accuses South Sudan of supporting the SPLM-N and its insurgency, a charge the government in Juba denies.