Following South Sudan's referendum on independence, Insight on Conflict will be producing a weekly round-up of the news. To subscribe to receive the updates via email, please contact or complete the form below.

News Round-up

  • Fighting intensified in South Kordofan as fighting between the Northern Army – the SAF – and southern-aligned forces spread out from the state capital, Kadugli. The reasons behind the outbreak in violence and who exactly is involved are unclear. The North believe that the fighting began after an attack on a police station by SPLA troops. The South deny any SPLA soldiers are involved and say the fighting began after the North attempted to forcibly disarm Southern-aligned forces in the state.
  • There are concerns that the violence will spread further than South Kordofan. The South has accused the North of bombing SPLM positions in Unity state, south of the border. There are also reports that the North is moving troops into Blue Nile.
  • The UN estimates that 40,000 people have fled Kadugli – two thirds of the population, and the UN has begun withdrawing all non-essential staff.
  • The week ended with presidential-level talks in Addis Ababa, which resulted in an agreement from Sudanese President, Omar al-Bashir, to withdraw from Abyei by 9 July and a UN deployment of Ethiopian peacekeepers.
  • The UN has said it should have done more to protect civilians during the Northern seizure of Abyei. A UN envoy has alleged rape, killing & inhumane treatment.
  • Human Rights Watch say the recent increase in fighting in Darfur is leading to more human rights abuses and the ICC prosecutor believes Bashir is still committing war crimes in the region. The rebel Justice and Equality Movement have said the framework agreement drawn up at the recent civil society conference in Doha forms a good basis for peace talks. The Liberation and Justice Movement are believed to be close to finalising a peace deal with Khartoum.

News in detail


Al Jazeera: Half the horror remains untold
07 June: Between 19 and 21 May, the Northern Sudanese Armed Forces annexed the Southern border town of Abyei. Next in Omar al-Bashir's violent re-mapping of Sudan's savannah belt of the 1956 borders, is the Blue Nile and South Kordofan/Nuba Mountains.

Sudan Tribune: Sudan appoints new chief administrator for Abyei area
08 June: Sudanese government appointed an interim chief administrator for the contested area of Abyei, two weeks after dissolving the Abyei administration and relieving SPLM’s member Deng Arop Kuol from his position, on 21 May.,39135

AFP: 'Rape' in Abyei, Darfur camps denied aid - UN envoy
08 June: The UN human rights envoy for Sudan on Wednesday highlighted reports of rape in Abyei after the army's occupation last month and criticised Khartoum for failing to provide essential aid to newly displaced Darfuris since January.

Sudan Tribune: SPLM officials pledge to take Abyei’s war crimes to the ICC
09 June: The leadership and office of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) in the disputed area on Thursday rejected the legitimacy of the newly appointed administration, and pledged to take Abyei’s case to the International Criminal Court (ICC) demanding that President Omar Hassan al-Bashir be indicted over atrocities committed there.,39160

Reuters: Sudan's Bashir agrees to Abyei withdrawal - diplomats
12 June: Sudan's president agreed to pull Northern troops out of the disputed Abyei border region before the South secedes on July 9, diplomats said on Sunday, signalling possible progress in talks before the split.

North-South relations

AFP: Deadly clashes across Sudan oil state - UN
08 June: Fighting in Sudan's volatile oil-producing border state of South Kordofan brought more deaths and displacement on Wednesday, the United Nations said, amid signs that the violence was spreading.

AFP: Sudan bombs Unity state 'to control oilfields'
10 June: The Sudanese army has launched repeated air strikes on Southern army positions in Unity state, less than a month ahead of the South's independence, in a bid to seize the state's oilfields, a Southern army spokesman charged on Friday.

Sudan Tribune: SPLM calls for international intervention over clashes in South Kordofan
07 June: The leadership of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) on Monday called for immediate international community assistance over armed confrontation it says was instigated by the National Congress Party (NCP), to provoke a return to war between the South and North in transitional areas.,39126

VOA: Sudanese Border Battles Put Thousands on the Run
10 June: Tens of thousands of people are fleeing from intense fighting along the undefined border region between Northern and Southern Sudan, with humanitarian officials warning the violence is getting worse.

Sudan Tribune: North Sudan army denies mutiny, downing of warplane in South Kordofan
11 June: North Sudan army has categorically denied reports of a mutiny within its ranks as well as claims by the opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) on downing one of its warplanes in the central state of South Kordofan.,39192

AFP: Sudan leaders to meet on border conflict
12 June: The presidents of North and South Sudan are to meet in Addis Ababa from Sunday to discuss the crises in the border regions of Abyei and South Kordofan, the African Union said in a statement Saturday.

Reuters: Sudan tells south not to back border state "rebellion"
12 June: North Sudan's ruling party warned the south on Sunday against supporting a "rebellion" in the Southern Kordofan border state, saying such a move could affect recognition of the south when it secedes.


Guardian: UN admits peacekeepers failed in Sudan clashes
06 June: The UN has admitted peacekeepers were wrong to stay in barracks during recent fighting between Northern and Southern Sudan that left scores of people dead and caused tens of thousands to flee.

NY Times: UN pulls staff from Sudanese city
12 June: The United Nations has begun pulling nonessential staff members from the restive Sudanese state of Southern Kordofan, even as it sends more peacekeepers there to protect civilians, officials said Sunday.

South Sudan

Sudan Tribune: Salva Kiir exposes his rift with Machar over South Sudan transitional constitution
09 June: The President of South Sudan’s government, Salva Kiir, has for the first time exposed the ongoing rift between him and his deputy, Riek Machar, over the transitional constitutional that would govern the soon-to-be independent Republic of South Sudan for the next four years starting from July 9.,39153

North Sudan

Bloomberg: Sudan’s Bashir proposes giving free land to ‘serious investors’
06 June: Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir proposed that the African country offer land for free to “serious investors,” with priority for “vital projects,” state-run SUNA news agency reported today.

Sudan Tribune: Africa Spy chiefs conference begins in Sudan’s capital
06 June: The eight ordinary session of the Committee of Intelligence and Security Services of Africa (CISSA) conference commenced on Monday in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, receiving an address by President al-Bashir who promised to recognize the independence of South Sudan.,39128

CNN: UN expert criticizes human rights situation in Sudan
09 June: Citing the political, military and humanitarian crises of Abyei, Darfur and Southern Sudan, an independent United Nations expert on human rights offered a critical view of human rights in the African nation Wednesday.


AFP: Fighting, rights abuses escalating in Darfur - HRW
06 June: Serious human rights abuses have risen in the last six months in Sudan's war-torn Darfur region, with a surge in deadly government-led attacks on populated areas, Human Rights Watch said on Monday.

Sudan Tribune: JEM is prepared to engage in talks with Sudanese government – spokesperson
06 June: The Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) said it is ready to engage in negotiations with the Sudanese government after the adoption of a framework document for peace in Darfur by over 500 delegates at a stakeholders conference in Doha this week.,39114

AFP: Bashir committing new crimes in Darfur - prosecutor
08 June: Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir is committing new crimes in Darfur and challenging the authority of the UN Security Council, the chief international war crimes prosecutor said Wednesday.

Sudan Tribune: Sudanese official heads to Doha to finalise peace pact with Darfur rebels
09 June: Sudan’s presidential adviser tasked with Darfur file Ghazi Salah al-Deen is expected to arrive in Doha on Friday for talks on the finalisation of a peace agreement with the rebel Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM).,39162

AFP: Darfur tribesmen executed, possible war crime - rights group
10 June: Militiamen backed by the Sudanese army executed 16 members of the Zaghawa tribe in North Darfur after they tried to rescue their stolen livestock, in what could amount to a war crime, a rights groups said on Thursday.

Sudan Tribune: LJM rebels free two Sudanese army personnel in Darfur
12 June: The rebel Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) freed today two Sudanese armed forces personnel detained after clashes that took place in South Darfur last January.,39183