Sudan: Southern leaders 'are supporting rebels'

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The Sudanese government has accused neighbouring South Sudan of causing instability in Southern Kordofan state, and made a formal complaint to the UN Security Council.

Tensions have flared in the oil-producing state after South Sudan seceded last month, taking its oilfields with it. The Security Council said in July that it was gravely concerned about violence in the volatile border territory.

Sudan said it was being granted only limited or no access to the area, home to ethnic Nuba people whose fighters sided with South Sudan during the 20-year civil war

"The complaint accuses South Sudan of causing instability, disrupting peace and offering support to rebel groups in the South Kordofan state," Khartoum's foreign ministry said.

The UN reported this month that the Sudanese army had carried out killings, arbitrary arrests and aerial bombardment targeting the ethnic group – a statement backed yesterday by claims of evidence from Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch – which, if proven, might constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity.