Conflict & Justice

Presidents of Sudan, South Sudan discuss border deal, amid threat of UN sanctions


Sudanese soldiers pose next to seized mortar rounds from the Sudanese Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA) of South Sudan in the oil region of Heglig on April 23, 2012. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir said during his visit to Heglig that there will be no more talks with South Sudan after weeks of border fighting in contested regions and tension between the two states.


Ashraf Shazly

The presidents of Sudan and South Sudan are meeting in Addis Ababa today as part of ongoing efforts to hammer out a border security deal that will permit the resumption of oil exports, Reuters Africa reported.

The meeting in the Ethiopian capital is timed to meet a deadline set by the United Nations Security Council, with Secretary General Ban Ki-moon calling for "co-operation and mutual development" from both sides.

More from GlobalPost: Sudan, South Sudan sign oil agreement

While delegations from the two countries have been in talks since the beginning of the month, today will mark the first time Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir has met his southern counterpart, Salva Kiir, in more than a year.

The UN has threatened sanctions if the talks do not produce a deal, the BBC reported, adding that Ban is urging Sudan to accept an African Union border plan that's already been agreed by South Sudan.

Sudan has objected to a demilitarized border zone running through a 14-mile long strip of grazing land, but ahead of the meeting between the presidents, Sudanese delegation spokesman Badr el-Din Abdallah said the north had "conditionally" accepted the deal.

"There is a proposal to accept this sector of the map with some special arrangements, military and administrative arrangements."

Last month, the Sudans reached an interim deal to restart southern oil exports through Sudan to the Red Sea ports.