S.Sudan says it shot down Sudanese fighter jet

South Sudan said Wednesday it had shot down a Sudanese fighter jet, accusing Khartoum of having ordered an aerial attack on its territory, but the north denied its aircraft had been downed.

"The forces of the Republic of South Sudan were able to shoot down and destroy one MiG-29," South Sudan's lead negotiator Pagan Amum told reporters in Addis Ababa where talks with Sudan on security adjourned without any deal signed.

Amum said Sudanese Defence Minister Abdelrahim Mohamed Hussein orderd the air strikes on the border town of Panakuach as the Khartoum delegation to the African Union-led talks left the Ethiopian capital.

"Indeed Sudanese air force... attacked South Sudan and the garrison of Panakuach where division four of SPLM is located," said Amum, referring to the southern army.

"This demonstrated very clearly the war-mongering posture and position of the government of Sudan," he added.

Sudan and South Sudan armies fought fierce battles in oil-rich Heglig region near their undemarcated border last week, sparking international fears the two former civil war foes could resume all-out war.

World leaders have urged the two sides to halt the fighting, the worst since South Sudan separated from Sudan last July.

by Burak Akinci © 2012 AFP

Source: AFP
Date: Apr 4, 2012