By CHRISTOPHER TORCHIA, Associated Press
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Rebels in Sudan’s Darfur region ambushed a South African unit that is part of a U.N.-African Union peacekeeping mission on Sunday, killing one soldier and seriously injuring another, the South African military said.
South African troops repelled the morning ambush, the military said.
Darfur has been in turmoil since 2003, when ethnic Africans rebelled, accusing the Arab-dominated Sudanese government of discrimination. The United Nations says 300,000 people have died in the conflict and 2.7 million have fled their homes.
Sudan’s president, Omar al-Bashir, is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and war crimes for atrocities linked to the Darfur fighting. Al-Bashir rejects the court’s authority.
A U.N. report released earlier this year said Sudan’s government “refused to allow” an emergency medical evacuation for an Ethiopian peacekeeper who was injured in an accident and died on the same day in April, an indication of worsening relations as al-Bashir wants the international mission out of the country.
Sudan refused the evacuation because of security concerns, according to the report. The report also said talks among the United Nations, African Union and Sudan on an exit strategy for the more than 20,000-strong mission “have been paused” but gave no details. There has been no “tangible progress” toward a solution to the Darfur conflict, it said.