US draft warns Sudan, S.Sudan of possible sanctions

Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:42pm GMT

Council diplomats said privately that China and Russia, which are usually reluctant to impose sanctions on any nation, had expressed reluctance to threaten the two Sudans with punitive measures. Beijing has traditionally acted as Khartoum's protector on the Security Council.


Khartoum's U.N. Ambassador Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman told reporters that any council resolution on the conflict should direct its threats at South Sudan.

"We have been the victim during this last aggression," he said, adding that any U.N. measures should be "directed to the culprit, to the aggressor, not to the victim."

Osman added that the deadlines in the AU communique and the draft resolution needed to be changed.

"The time frame contained in the communique needs to be adjusted because it's very short to adhere to," he said.

Clashes along the ill-defined border between the former civil-war foes has led to a standoff over the Heglig oil field after it was seized earlier this month by troops from South Sudan, which declared independence last year.

The Security Council last week discussed possibly imposing sanctions on Sudan and South Sudan if the violence did not stop.

South Sudanese President Salva Kiir said hostilities this week - after South Sudan had said it would withdraw from Heglig - amounted to a declaration of a war by his northern neighbor.

Distrust runs deep between the neighbors who are at loggerheads over the position of their border, how much the landlocked south should pay to transport its oil through Sudan, and the division of national debt, among other issues.

Both are poor countries - South Sudan is one of the poorest in the world - and the dispute between them has already halted nearly all the oil production that underpins both economies.

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir Mayardit speaks during his meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang at Zhongnanhai in Beijing April 25, 2012. REUTERS/Kazuhiro Ibuki/Pool
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