Khartoum: Sudan’s oil minister has told pipeline operators to halt the transit of South Sudanese oil, a ministry official said Saturday.
“Relevant instructions were sent to oil companies following the president’s decree to stop the transit of South Sudanese oil via the Sudanese territory,” the official said.
In his speech Saturday evening, Sudanese President Omar Bashir said his country would stop oil transit starting from Sunday in retaliation for the South Sudanese government’s support for rebels fighting against his regime in the states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
Juba denies supporting the insurgents.
“A decision to end South Sudanese oil transit was made after a careful study of all possible consequences and repercussions. Juba fails to comply with the agreements it had signed with Sudan, first of all about the inadmissibility of supporting rebel movements,” Bashir said.
As tensions between the two states intensified in recent days, Bashir ordered to open training camps for the armed forces and pro-government militia.
“We gave South Sudan a fully functional state with all infrastructure and money, but they preferred to bite a hand (that feeds),” the Sudanese leader said.
Sudan lost 75 percent of its known oil reserves but retained crucial oil transit infrastructure after South Sudan became an independent state.
First Published: Sunday, June 9, 2013, 09:39