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Landmine kills five in Sudan's Kordofan: state radio

A landmine killed five people and wounded 13 in Sudan's South Kordofan, state radio reported Wednesday, the eve of peace talks for the war-torn state on the South Sudan border. "Sudanese Red Crescent Society says five people were killed and 13 wounded in a landmine explosion" in the north of the state, Radio Omdurman said in an SMS message which gave no further details. Sudanese media almost never give casualty reports from Kordofan or Blue Nile, where government troops and rebels of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement - North (SPLM-N) have been fighting since 2011.

Leading Sudan critic calls for rebel amnesty

Sudanese armed rebels must be given amnesty and political prisoners should be freed, a leading dissident expelled by Sudan's ruling party says. Ghazi Salahuddin Atabani, a former adviser to President Omar al-Bashir, made the demand late Tuesday after Bashir appealed for a political and economic "renaissance" in a country ravaged by government-rebel clashes, poverty and political turmoil. "The wars have to stop, and the armed groups must be given amnesty," Atabani told reporters. "All the political detainees, political prisoners, have to be freed."

Bashir seeks political, economic 'renaissance' for Sudan

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir on Monday appealed for a political and economic renaissance in his country ravaged by war, poverty and political turmoil. It was the latest call Bashir has made in the past year for a broad political dialogue, including with the country's armed insurgents. But this time, he made his appeal directly to opposition figures -- including breakaway members of his own party -- who joined the audience of government-linked parties, cabinet members and foreign diplomats for his speech at a conference hall along the Blue Nile.

Bashir seeks political, economic 'renaissance' for Sudan

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir on Monday appealed for a political and economic renaissance in his country ravaged by war, poverty and political turmoil. It was the latest call Bashir has made in the past year for a broad political dialogue, including with the country's armed insurgents. But this time, he made his appeal directly to opposition figures -- including breakaway members of his own party -- who joined the audience of government-linked parties, cabinet members and foreign diplomats for his speech at a conference hall along the Blue Nile.

Bashir seeks political, economic 'renaissance' for Sudan

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir on Monday appealed for a political and economic renaissance in his country ravaged by war, poverty and political turmoil. "We in the National Congress Party (NCP) are calling for all Sudanese to participate in this renaissance," he said in a speech designed to address urgent calls for reform in his 25-year-old regime, but which fell short of critics' expectations. It was the latest call he has made in the past year for a broad political dialogue, including with the country's armed insurgents.

China weighs in as S.Sudan peace talks open

Peace talks between South Sudan's government and rebels started in Ethiopia on Monday, as key power China added its weight to efforts to end weeks of fighting in the world's youngest nation. Sudan meanwhile said that it and South Sudan had agreed during a visit to Juba by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to consider setting up a joint force to protect vital oilfields.

Bashir calls for peace on visit to South Sudan

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir arrived Monday in Juba calling for an end to three weeks of fighting in South Sudan as mediators struggled to get peace negotiations under way in neighbouring Ethiopia. There were reports meanwhile of ongoing fierce clashes near the rebel-held town of Bor, situated 200 kilometres (130 miles) north of the capital Juba, with South Sudan's army pouring in reinforcements in a bid to recapture the area. "There should be peace and security in South Sudan," Bashir said as he visited Juba for talks with his counterpart President Salva Kiir.

Sudan claims Kordofan areas 'liberated'

Sudan's military says it has "liberated" several areas of war-torn South Kordofan state, but rebels on Saturday dismissed the claim as propaganda, saying a government offensive achieved "nothing". The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) said late Friday that it had taken over Abu Hassan, a rebel command centre, "after a series of victories" elsewhere in the state. "SAF troops lost some martyrs and suffered wounded," the military said in a statement issued by the state SUNA news agency. It did not mention casualties among the insurgents.

New Sudan budget rules out price hikes

Sudan's new cabinet on Monday approved a budget ruling out price increases, after the slashing of fuel subsidies in September led to the worst urban unrest of President Omar al-Bashir's 24-year rule. "This budget will not include increases in taxation, nor will it raise other prices," Finance Minister Badereldien Mahmoud told reporters after ministers endorsed the 2014 financial estimates. The budget will go before parliament on Wednesday.

Sudan's Bashir unveils new govt after reform calls

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir on Sunday replaced his two vice presidents and unveiled a partially new cabinet after urgent calls for reform in the 24-year-old regime. The changes come less than a week after leading ruling party dissident Ghazi Salahuddin Atabani said he had launched a new "Reform" party relying on youth support that has attracted thousands of supporters. It was the most serious split in years within Bashir's National Congress Party (NCP), which has faced internal criticism over alleged corruption and stagnant leadership.
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