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Ethiopia denies accusing Sudan of executing Sudanese civilians

Ethiopia denies accusing Sudan of executing Sudanese civilians

Sudan’s Sovereign Council Chairman Major General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan addresses delegates after signing a declaration of principles between the Sudanese transitional government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, in Juba, South Sudan, March 28, 2021. (Reuters/Jock Solomon/File Photo

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June 27 (Reuters) – Ethiopia on Monday denied Sudan’s accusations that its army had captured and executed seven Sudanese soldiers and a civilian, and blamed the killing on a local militia.

Skirmishes have erupted between neighboring countries in recent years over the fertile and disputed border region of Al-Fashqa.

The Sudanese Foreign Ministry said on Monday that the two men were arrested on Sudanese soil on June 22 and taken to Ethiopia, where they were killed.

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The Ethiopian Foreign Ministry said, in a statement on Monday, that the facts of the incident were misrepresented and that the deaths were the result of a skirmish between Sudanese soldiers who said they had carried out an incursion into Ethiopian territory and a local militia.

She added that the incident will be investigated.

The Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which accused Ethiopia of displaying the bodies in public, said it is summoning the Ethiopian ambassador in Khartoum, recalling its ambassador from Addis Ababa for discussions, and attending an official complaint to the UN Security Council.

Following a visit to the region, the Sudanese military commander, General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, said that “the response will be felt on the ground”, and that “no new movements or encroachments on Sudanese territory will be allowed.”

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The Ethiopian statement said that the Ethiopian government “hopes that the Sudanese government will restrain itself from any escalation of the incident and take measures that will calm the situation.”

Tensions have been particularly high in recent years over Ethiopia’s construction of a hydroelectric dam on the Blue Nile, which Sudan and Egypt fear will affect their main water supplies.

The conflict in Ethiopia’s Tigray region has also sent tens of thousands of refugees across the border into eastern Sudan.

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(Report of Moataz Mohamed and Khaled Abdel Aziz and the Addis Ababa office). Written by Nafisa Al-Taher and Mahmoud Murad. Editing by Daniel Wallis, Andrew Heavens, William McClain

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