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U.N. Chief Says Sudan Oil Row Threat to Regional Security

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon warned Sunday that a furious row between Sudan and South Sudan threatened regional security.

Ban said both Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and his South Sudan counterpart Salva Kiir lacked the "political will" to tackle border and oil disputes since the South seceded last July.

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Sudan Rebels Say they Captured 29 Chinese Workers, 9 SAF Members

Rebels in Sudan's South Kordofan state have captured 29 Chinese workers after a battle with government forces, a spokesman for the insurgents said on Sunday.

Nine members of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) were also being held, Arnu Ngutulu Lodi of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), told Agence France Presse.

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Benin’s President Elected New African Union Chairman

Benin President Thomas Boni Yayi was elected the African Union Chairman Sunday, taking over the one-year post from Equatorial Guinea's President Teodoro Obiang Nguema, officials said.

"I want to congratulate the new chairman of the African Union... Boni Yayi," said Obiang, the outgoing chairman, speaking after the official announcement at the AU summit meeting in the Ethiopian capital.

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Bashir, Kiir Meet in Ethiopia over Sudan Oil Row

Sudan and South Sudan's presidents met for talks Friday hosted by an East African peace bloc, to resolve an oil dispute between the two former foes that is threatening fresh violence.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and the former rebel turned South Sudanese President Salva Kiir met in the Ethiopian capital, a week after the South ordered a production shutdown, accusing Khartoum of stealing its oil.

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Key Darfur Rebel Group Says New Leader Chosen

A key rebel group in Sudan's troubled Darfur region said on Thursday it has chosen a one-time university professor to head the movement after his brother, the former leader, was killed last month.

At a two-day meeting in South Kordofan state, the Justice and Equality Movement selected Gibril Ibrahim to replace his brother Khalil, the group's spokesman Gibril Adam Bilal told AFP.

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Sudan Rejects Aid 'Corridor' for War-Torn States

Sudan on Friday rejected any plan for an aid "corridor" to war-torn southern states after the United States warned of a possible "horrific" famine affecting civilians in the area.

Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said on Tuesday the Security Council "would have to review a variety of other options" to get food to people in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states if famine breaks out.

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South Sudan Orders Production Shutdown in Oil Row

South Sudan has ordered the shutdown of oil production amid a deepening row with Khartoum over pipeline fees, the government said Friday.

"The government has instructed the minister of petroleum and mining to proceed with arrangements for a complete shutdown of oil production", Minister of Information Barnaba Marial Benjamin told Agence France Presse Friday.

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Sudan Denies Killing 16 Villagers in S. Kordofan Bombing

The Sudanese military on Saturday denied bombing civilians in an operation which rebels said left 16 villagers and five government troops dead near the South Sudanese frontier.

Four rebels were wounded and "less than three" killed in the fighting, Mubarak Abdelrahman Ahmed, of the rebel youth wing in South Kordofan state, told Agence France Presse by satellite telephone.

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Pope: Anti-Christian Attacks in Nigeria Show Peace Still Elusive

Pope Benedict XVI on Monday said peace and reconciliation in Africa remained a "distant" goal, pointing to anti-Christian attacks in northern Nigeria that have killed dozens of people in recent days.

"On the continent of Africa ... it is essential that cooperation between Christian communities and governments favor progress along the path of justice, peace and reconciliation, where respect is shown for members of all ethnic groups and all religions," the pope said in a speech at the Vatican.

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Sudan Rebels Tell Libya to Arrest Bashir

A "revolutionary front" of Sudanese rebels seeking to overthrow President Omar al-Bashir asked Libya to arrest the accused war criminal during his visit to Tripoli that began on Saturday.

Bashir arrived in the Libyan capital for his first visit since the country's long-time dictator Moammar Gadhafi was overthrown and killed last year.

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