North, South Sudan Sign Border Security Agreement

Published on Tuesday 31st May 2011

The African Union says north and south Sudan have signed an agreement to create a demilitarized border zone and a joint diplomatic effort to maintain stable relations.The AU said in a statement Tuesday the two sides agreed to the jointly monitored and patrolled border zone after a meeting Monday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.The north and south governments also agreed to a diplomatic partnership to continue stable and secure relations, as the south prepares to declare its independence in July.  The effort will be led by each side's minister of defense, and will also include the heads of the army, intelligence, police and other senior officials.The AU says the agreement will clear the way for further security talks, which an AU panel will convene within a week.The deal comes amid increased tensions between the north and south over key border areas, including Blue Nile, South Kordofan and the oil-rich Abyei region.North and south Sudan fought a 21-year civil war that ended in 2005.  The south voted to split from the north in a January referendum.



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